In about two weeks, members of the Salem community will have an opportunity to participate in a virtual fundraiser to help the less fortunate. The Inaugural Blue Ridge Autism and Achievement Center (BRAAC) Virtual Cycle Challenge is scheduled to begin on Friday, March 26 and last through Sunday, March 28.
A program of St. Vincent’s Home (SVH) Services, BRACC provides education and services for clients between the ages of two and 22 as well as families affected by autism and other unique learning challenges.
“BRAAC understands the need of individuals with learning challenges vary from person to person. Individualized plans are developed to address each student’s personal needs,” Development Coordinator Teri Nance said. “BRAAC is committed to providing qualified trained staff, as well as resources and training to local families and professionals.”
The virtual fundraiser has four challenges, the Three-Mile Fun Ride, Ten-Mile Challenge, 20-Mile Challenge and the King and Queen of the Mountain. Timed through the STRAVA app, participants can cycle solo or as a group anywhere and at any time during the scheduled dates. All registrants who participate in the event will receive a t-shirt.
Said Ally Bowersock of RunAbout Sports, “This challenge is great timing for those wanting to get in shape, a perfect opportunity to get those miles in and benefit a worthy local non-profit at the same time.”
Salem native Josh Barnes says he is looking forward to participating in the virtual fundraiser. “I have two children, ages nine and six, and they both enjoy being outdoors. This event will give us a chance to bond as a family while also helping the less fortunate. It’s a win-win for everybody,” he said.
Those familiar with BRAAC and its impact on the community speak highly of the nonsectarian organization. Founded 12 years ago, BRAAC is funded through private grants, donations, tuition and fees.
“Blue Ridge Autism and Achievement Center’s main objective is to serve children and families who are faced with unique learning challenges, specifically autism and learning disabilities, in and around the Roanoke Valley. BRAAC also provides specialized educational programs in a private day school setting as well as direct and consultative educational services in public schools,” said Nance.
She added, “An after-school tutoring program provides continuity and reinforces consistency for students and families. BRAAC provides specialized services for children in their homes as well as in-home training for parents too.”
For more information, visit http://braacroanoke.org.