Geerz Sees Record Enrollment
Despite the devastating impact that Covid-19 has had throughout the world and the aggressive second wave that continues to plague Israel, we, at Geerz, are proceeding with an ambitious expansion plan to bring Geerz to many new communities. Whereas last year, our 24 groups served six different communities, this year we plan to double the number of active communities to twelve.
Our expansion efforts focus mainly on areas in which the children suffer from the trauma of physical and emotional insecurity such as in those communities along the Gaza periphery. The revolutionary Geerz therapeutic mountain biking program has proven to be remarkably effective in treating PTSD and other anxiety related disorders even where conventional therapy has failed. Our instructors recently underwent special training in identifying and dealing with cases of PTSD led by Dr. Alex Bailey, a clinical psychologist who consults for Geerz and conducts studies that evaluate the effectiveness of the program.
Another major focus is the formation of new groups in areas that are plagued with very poor socioeconomic status. Studies have shown that kids who come from these areas are at far greater risk for developing problematic and anti-social behavior. In addition, the lack of resources in these towns typically means that their families are less likely to be able to afford the intervention that is vital to prevent a deterioration of their situation. Here too, the focus and responsibility that are developed by the kids via the carefully crafted Geerz curriculum, have been a real game changer for so many of these kids, in areas as diverse as improved academic performance, anger management, communication with parents, siblings and peers and heightened self-esteem.
We are constantly updating and revising our revolutionary Geerz curriculum to reflect the reality of a world which is changing at a dizzying pace. Being a Geerz instructor is a highly challenging and rewarding task and we are immensely proud of the dedicated men and women who continue to work tirelessly to help transform the lives of hundreds of kids each year.
The Get into Geerz Charity Ride was a Huge Success
“My husband is in jail for physically and emotionally abusing both me and our son. Our son had so much anxiety that he was terrified to be himself. He was shy, quiet, lonely and far too scared to trust anyone. I struggle tremendously to support my family, and am still constantly dealing with courts and legal fees. Someone approached Geerz and told them about my situation. Nachum personally contacted me and arranged for my son to get his own new bike, matched my son with the best instructor for his situation, and kept personal tabs on his progress.
Each week, the instructor picked up and dropped off my son. As the weeks went by, my son showed a natural talent in biking. As he advanced, his confidence and self-esteem grew. He made friends, and finally encountered a male adult that he began to trust and value. The weekly life skills that my son came home with were relevant and transformative and he actually enjoyed discussing them with me. Geerz gave my son back his childhood. They restored a sense of peace and happiness by rebuilding his sense of self-worth. This is something that I doubted was even possible.”
A Parent's Testimonial
The global Covid-19 crisis has created formidable challenges for the charitable world. Hundreds of worthy organizations have shut their doors while others downsize to stay afloat. Geerz was not immune to this worldwide trend. We were forced to postpone our flagship fundraiser last March, just as the Covid-19 crisis was emerging in Israel. Government regulations forced us to cancel much scheduled Geerz programming and our fundraising efforts were profoundly impacted by the travel restrictions and the impact of the crisis on our loyal donor base.
Most organizations in our position would respond by shelving their expansion plans. At Geerz we are doing the opposite, expanding from six to twelve communities. The suffering experienced by so many and the uncertainty about the future obligates us to do more with less. Geerz is about empowering kids to overcome challenges they will encounter in life through the profound lessons inherent in mountain biking. But our mission does not end there. Mountain biking uniquely forms bonds between people. This makes it an ideal vehicle to bridge the gaps and hostility which are all-too prevalent in Israeli society. At Geerz, we often see how kids, with absolutely nothing in common, become trusted friends through their time on the trails. We call this concept "Tikkun Olam" and it guides both our mission statement and our long-term strategic vision.
That's why we have reached out to the poor and ethnically diverse communities in the Southern and Northern peripheries and are bringing Geerz to these communities. No, they cannot afford to pay for Geerz. But without us, their kids will stagnate in front of screens and roam the streets aimlessly. Some would argue that we should preserve our limited resources in these uncertain times. We disagree. Where there is suffering that we can alleviate, we cannot look away. So we will be where we are needed most. That is Tikkun Olam.
To make this happen, we will tighten our belts, work harder and reduce costs. But we will expand because these kids need us and we dare not say no. And friends, we need your help. Yes, we know that you are inundated with endless pleas for help and that your resources are limited. So all we can promise is this: Your contribution will absolutely change these kids' lives....not for a year or two but permanently. They will be empowered, imbued with confidence, respect, integrity and responsibility towards others. Contributions of any size are deeply appreciated. The cost of a single child in Geerz for a month is $180, $1800 for a full year. You can bring Geerz to a brand new community for $10,000. Gather your friends and family to sponsor a group and you will have collectively performed an act with far-reaching ramifications. That is Tikkun Olam.
How Geerz applies bike skills to life skills
Join us for the ride of your life! Geerz is thrilled to announce that the incomparable, two day Get Into Geerz (GIG) ride will be taking place on November 8-10 in the spectacular trails of the Western Galilee. After all of the misery of this past six months, you deserve something special and we have just the thing. Choose from five fantastic route options, including an all new gravel route which combines the sleekness of road cycling with the unsurpassed beauty of trail riding.
Our riders are some of the finest and most fun-loving bunch of guys you will ever meet. Accommodations are in the newly renovated Nachsholim hotel on the beach under the Carmel mountains. Every detail is planned to make your ride experience utterly mind-blowing, including SWAG, routes, accommodations, food, logistics, amenities and more. The Ride has a minimum fundraising requirement of $3,600 with ride proceeds funding Geerz' innovative, therapeutic mountain biking programs for kids who suffer from PTSD, anxiety, ADHD, autism, excessive anger and eating disorders. Geerz works even where conventional therapy fails.
Even if you can't join us, you can still support us by being a virtual rider for $3600 which covers the cost of two new kids in the Geerz program. Sponsor a single child for $1800.
So what are you waiting for? You deserve this and we have every intention of delivering big time. Whether you want to ride hard or take it easy, ride technical single track or smooth gravel paths, we have the perfect route for you. We guarantee that you will absolutely have the time of your life. To register https://www.geerz.site/get-into-geerz/en/new-athlete.php?race=24. For questions, contact Chaim Wizman at email@example.com.