Madonna, Cher, Michael Bublé and Kathleen Turner are among the winners of the annual bike ride called "Wheels of Love", which revealed records for the leading ALYN pediatric rehabilitation hospital in Israel, which raised more than 3.5 million dollars.
A five-day bicycle tour offering a wide range of tracks for many riding stages has just ended in Israel. The goal was to raise US $ 3.2 million for children at the ALYN Hospital in Jerusalem, a non-profit health center set up 85 years ago for the early rehabilitation of sick children. By the end of the journey, this figure reached $ 3,517,634.
It is the largest annual international sports charity event in Israel, featuring hundreds of cyclists and volunteers from the Jewish state and around the world.
About 600 riders participated in the largest contingent of cyclists outside Israel (almost a third) flying from the United States. In the first three days, drivers enjoyed the demanding roads and mountain routes in the south and the Dead Sea area, and in the past two days, drivers met the slopes of Judea's hills. At the end of the journey, riders from all directions converge and ride along with a police escort to a hospital where they are welcomed by current patients, staff, friends and families who gathered to worship their efforts and generosity.
"Arriving at ALYN on the last day of the ride is a very exciting, but degrading experience," says Ben Cohen, riding with the AK Riders team around his home town of Woodmere, NY "You just finished five days of driving, overcoming many obstacles-the heat, the wind , rough terrain, crazy downhill, exhaustive downhill, and then you see children who wake up every day of their lives to great challenges … and give us medals! "
Harmon Grossman of Teaneck, N.J., completed his bicycle eight times. "People speak of all holy places in Jerusalem, but I can tell you that the most sacred city in Jerusalem is a hospital where professionals and volunteers help children from all over the corner of Israel to overcome the deepest challenges that can be lived."
He added that "the ultimate ascent to Jerusalem is always a physical challenge, but when you drive to a hospital and there are those deeply disabled children who are looking forward to seeing you and putting a medal around your neck, well, I am not embarrassed to tell you I cry year. "
Sixth co-operated with Ron offer. The offer, which drives to ride in and around Silver Spring, says that ALYN children are "real heroes / heroines" when driving. "They are afraid every day of the year, long after we have collected bicycles, they did not volunteer to excite their parts and can not simply" stop driving "when they want it. They struggle every day and never give up."
The most exciting group of participants are patients and former patients themselves – Swift and Bold ALYN Riders, who join a whole or only one day on a tandem wheel, in a manual cycle or even on a regular bike, according to their individual ability and guidance dedicated volunteers.
"I feel incredible," says 17-year-old Qais Oweis, who for the second time performed 50 kilometers of road cycling on his handwheel. Qais, who now, after repeated surgeries, can help with traps, has been rehabilitating post-operations at ALYN several months at a time.
Refine your skills
Ruth Witztum, a physiotherapist at the ALYN Rehabilitation Center, has been running Swift and Bold over the past 7 years. The cyclist itself, in the first year of ALYN, is a participant in the "Wheels of Love" vehicle. The following year, she looked at the children who treated her and thought that some might be involved. At first, children and families thought it would be impossible. Some could not walk, some could only take steps – and Witztum asked them to drive a 2-kilometer race!
But the children accepted the challenge, but Ruth saw an exceptional change. "Dreaming" 2 kilometers became 10 kilometers; This has also increased the self-esteem of children, as well as the trust of parents. Parents were so accustomed that they were doing schedules around the time of treatment, that they had to "shift the tool" and know that they are currently planning the training around the training. Children who could not participate in other activities after school were now part of the group.
In Witztum's words, "Being on the wheel gives these children better health, independence and mobility. We just had to find the right bike for everyone. More importantly, as a successful driver, they can no longer reflect themselves on their disabilities, but also their driving skills. "
Now children aged 10 to 22 years are seriously aware of a group of volunteers for four months leading to driving. This year, 15 members of Swift and Bold Team, who, together with other cyclists from Israel and abroad, went on off-road and road routes on tandems and hand wheels.
Donations collected within the campaign help to bridge the gap between actual hospital expenditures, a quality multidisciplinary rehabilitation treatment that it provides, and the reimbursement of the regular official payment received for each hospitalized child.
Dr. Maurit Beeri, director of the ALYN hospital, explains that "the funds raised enable us to provide the children with the treatments and therapies they need instead of limiting the concern for the basic needs of the Israeli national healthcare system." Each additional pen will be directed to additional therapists , a wider choice of emotional support, innovative interdisciplinary projects and more practical care. It helps the child to be an additional opportunity that could make the difference in the world. "