A bike ride from Noosa to Byron Bay aims to raise $50,000 for the Autism Centre of Excellence (ACE) to help support parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The four-day charity event from August 16-19 will travel from Noosa Heads to Byron Bay covering some of the best cycling roads in the area including the Noosa hinterland and Tamborine Mountain.

The ride is co-ordinated by Glenn Williams, whose son Mitchell has ASD. After his wife Rayelene was inspired by an ACE seminar last year, Glenn decided to organise the ACE Gran Fondo ride.

Proceeds from the event will go towards Griffith University’s Autism Centre of Excellence (ACE) which provides workshops for parents of children with autism to help them find the best treatment and support options.

“While a lot is being done for children with autism in early intervention, there is little help for parents who are struggling to support their child as they get older and move into formal schooling and beyond,’’ says Autism Centre of Excellence Director Professor Jacqueline Roberts.

“Our goal is to enable children with autism to succeed at school and key to that is parents and schools working together. Our work at ACE is unique because we offer evidence-based workshops that will give parents the knowledge and confidence to advocate for their child in school.”

Says Glenn, “Mitchell was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder at age four but we knew a long time before then.”

“Up until about 18 months old, he was like any normal young child, then slowly his behaviour and social interaction changed and we knew something was wrong.”

“Rayelene and I wanted to do something to help benefit other families in Queensland and the money raised from the ACE Gran Fondo ride will go some way towards providing this assistance.”

The ACE Gran Fondo team is looking for more riders. To register or donate click here.