Dad's fundraising ride supports his son

Raiyaan helps his dad, Baker, prepare for Spring CycleRaiyaan helps his dad, Baker, prepare for Spring Cycle

Sydney's North Shore dad, Baker Tamory, is taking up the challenge for charity in Bicycle NSW’s Spring Cycle, Sydney’s largest recreational bike ride, on Sunday 16 October. Baker is using the ride to fundraise for Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children (RIDBC), which supports his son Raiyaan who has hearing loss.

Diagnosed with hearing loss at birth, Raiyaan received two hearing aids at six weeks of age.

“There is no history of hearing loss in our family so it was an absolute shock,” said Baker. “It was very confronting for us as parents and it was an emotional time. You just want the best for your child."

“It was also hard because, as Muslims, one of our religious rituals is reciting the call to prayer into the ears of your newborn. When Raiyaan was diagnosed we realised he may not have been able to hear that prayer.”

At three months of age, Raiyaan began accessing intensive weekly speech and language sessions through RIDBC Early Learning Program (Hearing Impairment).

“RIDBC has given us the skills we need to communicate with our son,” said Baker. “The progress Raiyaan has made is fantastic. He is now nearly four years old and his language skills are age appropriate, if not above, and he speaks three languages – English, Dari and Arabic.”

Baker wanted to use Spring cycle to support RIDBC.

“When I found out that I could use the ride to fundraise for RIDBC it was a eureka moment. My wife, Farida, and I often feel like, as humans, we tend to just take and take. It’s so often about ‘what’s in it for me?’ This ride was a way for us to give back to RIDBC as they have done so much for us,” said Baker.

This year the cycling group Sydney Muslim Cyclists (SMC), which Baker is a member, consists of more than 20 riders who have dedicated their ride to Raiyaan with all proceeds raised being donated to RIDBC.

“The SMC raises funds for various charities and gives back to the community at large. This year, we decided to focus on the Spring Cycle bicycle event and raise funds for RIDBC. It means a lot to me and I can’t wait for Raiyaan to participate in next year’s Spring Cycle,” said Baker.

Baker and his team of riders hope to raise $5,000 this year for RIDBC.

“Before Raiyaan was born we had so little knowledge of the amazing volunteers, charities and people who give their blood, sweat and tears to ensure children like Raiyaan can achieve the best outcomes. I am an extremely proud Australian citizen and I am so indebted to RIDBC and this beautiful country for doing so much for my son.”

RIDBC is a charity and Australia’s largest non-government provider of therapy, education and cochlear implant services for people with hearing or vision loss, supporting thousands of adults, children and their families, each year.

RIDBC relies heavily on fundraising and community support to be able to continue to make a difference in people's lives.