Wheel2Wheel and Morgan Parker on Asian Journey

Wheel2Wheel Travel Team BannerAustralian Morgan Parker was an investment banker in Hong Kong when the Great Recession hit the region hard, as it did much of the world. This event forced most everyone – except the wealthy – to reconsider their lives and the basic values they held about what living is all about.

Parker found himself dissatisfied with his own desires for financial gain and personal achievement – goals all of us seem to be constantly focused upon; he discovered his need to help others and began doing so.

Those early days for Parker were about researching charities and writing checks to help out, but the longer he did this, the more he wondered how that money was spent and who was being helped. As Parker delved more deeply looking for just how much of a difference he was making, he learned about the many issues which plague small-scale assistance groups and that knowledge changed his approach.

Wheel2Wheel's Simon Lock & Morgan ParkerThe large charities of the world have a great deal of help with advertising and marketing, but the small and local groups do not have that benefit. Instead, they have to spend much of their time seeking money, volunteers and awareness – leaving less time to do the work which they were founded to do.

This led Parker towards an idea, a grand idea which could help these local aid organizations get those precious commodities a bit more easily. He decided to found an organization to work as a meta-organizer which is setup to help bring awareness and money to groups in Hong Kong, Australia, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. He named it Wheel2Wheel and began to plan his path.

Part of Wheel2Wheel is a grand motorcycle journey which is set to encompass 100 days, 20,000 kilometers (12,400+ miles) and ten countries. In each of those countries, Parker has chosen a local non-governmental organization to work with and each in a slightly different way. It took two years to do the groundwork necessary for the trip – finding the ten charities was quite possibly the most difficult aspect.

Wheel2Wheel's Morgan Parker and his BMW F800GSHe chose the motorcycle ride based on the passion people have for that for of transport. The simple equation is that more passion combined with the story of Parker out there in the world and actually visiting the people who are being helped will equal more awareness and more money, and thus heightened effectiveness.

Parker and Wheel2Wheel have already started the journey and he recently crossed into Cambodia, but he still has much more to complete. If you are interested or want to give your own help to the man and his mission, you can either check out the Wheel2Wheel website or visit their Facebook page. Whatever you do, please join us in wishing Parker and Wheel2Wheel great success in the journey and in the vision this group has for the future of giving and helping.

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com

No Fear Starts In-Store Toy Drive With Rady Children’s Hospital

no_fear_toy_driveHeading to a No Fear outlet? Bring a toy. No Fear is partnering with Rady Children’s Hospital for an in-store charity toy drive throughout the month of April.

“We are very excited to be working with Rady Children’s Hospital,” said No Fear Marketing Manager Ashmore Bodiford.

This will be the first time No Fear holds a charity toy drive, but it isn’t likely that it will be the last.

“Not only are we helping out a great organization to help the kids, but we are also reaching our own community,” Bodiford added. “We look forward to ongoing work with this organization throughout the year.”

No Fear will be holding the toy drive from today, April 1st, to the end of the month. In order to encourage customers to donate, No Fear is offering people who bring in a toy a 10% off discount toward their next purchase.

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com

Harley Donates $250,000 to Japan Relief Effort

harley_davidson_logoHarley-Davidson hasn’t been impacted by the Japan earthquake nearly as much as motorcycle manufacturers like Honda and Kawasaki, but the Harley-Davidson Foundation is still stepping up to help the Japanese relief effort. The Harley-Davidson Foundation announced today that it was making a $250,000 donation to Japan.

Harley’s donation will go to the Red Cross and will help the overall disaster relief efforts in Japan.

“Our hearts go out to all the people in Japan who have been impacted by these tragic events,” said Foundation President Gail Lione. “It is important to all of us at Harley-Davidson to support the relief efforts and help the country through this devastating time.”

Harley-Davidson’s Japan subsidiary has also set up a relief fund. The Japan subsidiary has been sending food, water, and supplies to disaster areas.

If you’d like to donate to the Japan relief effort, you can do so at RedCross.com.

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com

Victories for Haslam Mean Charity for SPARKS

Sparks_CharityThe better Leon Haslam does in the 2011 World Superbike series, the more he will give to SPARKS charity. Haslam has once again chosen children’s charity SPARKS, to share in his success this racing season.

Haslam will donate to SPARKS after every race this season, depending on his finishing position. Haslam will give 10 Euros (approximately $14) to SPARKS for every point he earns in the 2011 World Superbike Championship.

“I scored 376 points in 2010,” Haslam said. “But I’d rather score what Max Biaggi scored with 451, win the Championship and hand over a bigger cheque to SPARKS.”

SPARKS is supported by many popular sports figures, and has been around since the 1960s. SPARKS helps fund medical research to make sure that all babies are born and stay healthy.

“Leon has been a valuable supporter of SPARKS for a number of years and this latest donation is very much appreciated,” said SPARKS President Jason Leonard. “We always wish Leon well in his annual World Championship campaign but we’ll be cheering him on just that little bit more in 2011!”

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com

The Guts and Glory Rally; 9000 Miles for Charity

guts_and_glory1000 motorcycles. 48 states. 9,000 + miles. 11 Days. 1 winner. The Guts and Glory Motorcycle Rally takes riders from Los Angeles to Bar Harbor Maine in an effort to raise money for Shriner Hospitals for Children and three Veteran Charities.

If you have 11 days, an iron butt, and a love for motorcycles, you’ll be right at home on the Guts and Glory Motorcycle Rally. The inaugural event will kick off on May 17th, 2011, in Los Angeles, and will end 11 days later in Bar Harbor, Maine, over Memorial Day weekend.

The Guts and Glory Motorcycle Rally is a timed rally with a grand prize of $100,000. But the grand prize is just junk change compared to the G&G rally’s goal of raising $10,000,000 for charity.

“It’s feztastic for the Guts & Glory Rally to be sharing the proceeds of this 9000 mile (+) ride with the ‘worlds greatest philanthropy’ as Shriner’s continue the monumental job of giving a better life and future to our kids,” said George Mitchell, the Imperial Potentate of the Shriners International. “The lengthy and prestigious history of providing specialized care for almost a million children in need has been the Shrine focus for the past 88 years. It is my hope this event will reflect on all Shriner’s past success.”

Participating riders will each start out with 11,000 points. They will then complete each leg of the journey (there are 11 checkpoints) trying to hit a target time established by an independent timing company. For each minute they arrive over or under the set target time, they will lose one point. The rider that reaches Bar Harbor at the end of the Rally with the most points, will receive a $100,000 and a hand-crafted Dave Perewitz custom motorcycle.

That’s some pretty sweet incentive. But riders will also be earning money for charity. The Ride a Mile program lets companies donate per collective mile. So every mile you ride, the more money you earn for Shriner Children’s Hopsitals. Riders can also participate in one leg of the journey, if 11 days and 9000 miles is a little too much.

“It is an amazing privilege to work with the Shriners, and our Veterans, on what we all know will be the Ride of 2011,” said Guts & Glory Motorsports president, Robert Swope. “We are excited about making a difference in the lives of thousands of children and veteran hero’s… two things very close to the hearts of all of us creating the Guts & Glory.”

You can read more about the Guts and Glory Motorcycle Rally here.

Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com