About the ride
In 2019, 28 individuals from the real estate industry raised over $220,000 for Hands Across the Water through the Digital Live training program and inaugural charity bike ride. The funds from this program will provide kids with an opportunity of choice through education, in addition to future opportunities when it comes time for our kids to leave our homes.
In 2020, Steve Carroll will not only be expanding Digital Live across the country, but he has committed to expanding the bike ride to not one but two 500km rides through Thailand to raise $500,000 to support this initiative. The ride is set to go bigger and better in 2020 with interest from the UK and NZ real estate businesses looking to join this incredible shared experience. Anyone and everyone from across the real estate sector is invited to join us. This is not a franchise exclusive ride. This is an industry ride. A place for the industry to come together as one and make a difference in the lives of those are that less fortunate while making a difference in their own lives.
There will be two options to ride with the Digital Live Team in 2020. The Mekong Ride starts in Bueng Khan in Thailand’s North-East. You’ll follow the incredibly bio-diverse Mekong River before heading west through villages and rural communities not often visited by foreigners. Following a well-deserved rest day in the middle, you’ll ride into one of our homes, Home Hug in Yasothon to be greeted excitedly by the children you have worked so hard to support.
The Coastal Ride will take you down the east coast beside the gulf of Thailand. You will cycle through resort towns such as Hua Hin and Khiri Khan before crossing the mountains that divide the east and west. From there it’s a short trip to Khao Lak where the children from our Baan Tharn Namchai home will be waiting excitedly to greet you and show you exactly how important your fundraised dollars are – not just for sustaining them, but for deeply enriching their lives.
If you like the sound of both rides and are up for the challenge of cycling 1,000km in 10 days, then there is no greater challenge or reward than completing the Ultimate Ride. This is no mean feat but if you can ride 100km in a day, you can ride 1,000km in 10 days. You’ll recoup for three days in-between rides as well as a rest day in the middle of each ride.
Where will the funds go?
We recognise that the future is not just in obtaining a degree. What if we can provide our kids with skills based training that gives them access to real people, real jobs, and experiential learning. What if we can then provide those kids with a stepping stone to starting a business in their own community or employment through a Hands run organisation in Thailand. A place where their skills matter. A place where the results on a medical certificate don’t determine their future. A place where there is equal pay and good working conditions.
When we look at the future of work, we are bombarded with talk of robots, AI, and offshore support. We know that there is digital isolation in regional areas and that there is a gap to fill around technological skills that will help our kids navigate work in later years. With the funds raised from Digital Live, and the support of some tech partners on the ground in Thailand, the vision is to create a Computer Programming Traineeship that will be run out of a dedicated Learning Centre at Home Hug.
The Digital Live Learning Centre will teach kids to code so they can move into programming roles in the future. Down the track our vision is to move this operation to a commercial business that can provide offshore programming and development. This not only provides our kids with an opportunity for training and employment, without the weight of their health hanging on their shoulders, but again it will provide sustainable income back into our homes.