VERY IMPORTANT NEWS:
For the past 6 years, we’ve been quite fortunate to have passionate and generous cyclists from the Greater Bay Area participate in our annual Wheels for Meals Ride. You’ve raised critical funds to support the delivery of meals and wellness checks for homebound seniors throughout Alameda County. 2015 is no exception!
2015 WHEELS FOR MEALS RIDE CANCELLATION
After much deliberation, our Board of Directors, in consultation with our Ride Chair, Peter Holst, and our Safety and Communications Expert, Chris Quirk, has decided to cancel this year’s Ride in the interest of protecting your safety. We hope you understand that this feels like the right thing to do. On July 31, Gov. Brown summed things up perfectly when he declared a state of emergency and said, “California’s severe drought and extreme weather have turned much of the state into a tinderbox.” Compared to last year, three times the number of acres have already burned statewide. So, we’ve been carefully monitoring our courses, the park and the nearby area. Then last Wednesday, more than 2,500 acres burned in the Livermore Valley, including parts of our course.
The decision wasn’t easy, especially given that we have seniors who are depending on us to raise money. It’s quite possible though that there might be additional burn before the Ride, but even if that doesn’t happen, the routes and the park already look quite dismal. Returning for the post-ride celebration, you’d arrive to a park with no grass, and only hard, dry dirt to sit on and possibly be greeted by unique and unpleasant odors from the lake while trying to enjoy your BBQ lunch. Moving forward might risk safety or, at the very least, it’d greatly sacrifice the quality of the event. We only want you to have a great experience, and we also want to keep you safe.
85 SENIORS ARE STILL GOING HUNGRY
We all may be disappointed, but no one will be more affected than our seniors. As previously mentioned, we still have 85 frail, homebound seniors on our waiting list. They desperately need us to rally and raise funds because access to nutritious meals can’t wait until next year! Please continue to reach out to your networks. People are incredibly generous, but we need your help to let them know about this situation. Fire shouldn’t stop us from nourishing our homebound senior neighbors.
YOU CAN STILL HELP
Although there won’t be a physical ride, the need and cause behind the fundraising still exists. Your fundraising page will remain active through Saturday, October 17th. Please encourage others to sign up as Virtual Riders if they’d like to help raise money to provide meals for our waiting seniors. We’re still offering great incentive prizes! Please review the revised prize list to see our current offerings. Prizes may be mailed or picked up after fundraising ends on October 17th (more details to come).
TAX-DEDUCTIBLE DONATIONS & REFUNDS
We sincerely hope you’ll consider turning your registration fee into a tax-deductible donation. Each registration and donation enables us to reduce the size of our waiting list.
IMPORTANT: If you’d like to turn your registration into a tax-deductible donation, no further action is required. If we don’t hear back from you by Wednesday, September 30th, we’ll send you a donation acknowledgement letter for your tax purposes. If you’d like a refund, please email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org and provide the name in which you registered, the names of other cyclists whose registrations you paid for, and the total amount to be refunded.
We’re doing our very best to inform everyone about the cancellation, however, we don’t have full contact information for all of your donors. Please inform them about the cancellation and let them know that if they require a refund, they should email their request to email@example.com before September 30th.
Again, please remember that 85 seniors are counting on us!
You’ll likely never meet the seniors whose lives you’re changing with your hard work and generosity, but on their behalf, we sincerely thank you! We appreciate your support and understanding. Let’s all hope that El Nino gives us the rain we need so that things will be better next year!
United in the fight against senior hunger,
Alameda County Meals on Wheels Board of Directors and the Wheels for Meals Ride Staff
Alameda County Meals on Wheels
80 Swan Way, Ste. 120, Oakland, CA 94621
Mailing: PO Box 14002, Oakland, CA 94614