Even a little rain . . . okay, a lot, couldn’t dampen the spirits of those on bikes during the annual Cops for Kids Ride presented by the Kelowna Foundation for Hope and Social Innovation.
More than 30 cyclists and support staff overcame severe rain during the ride from Castlegar to Nelson Monday, just one of the stages of the Cops for Kids ride that began Friday in Kelowna.
“Part of the ride is getting the opportunity to actually meet with the families that we’ve helped with funding ,” said BC Deputy Sheriff Mike Kosof of Nelson.
“Cops for Kids is able to provides funding throughout the year to families across the South East District, and cycling into these communities is when we get to meet them in person for the first time. Knowing that we’ve helped a family in their time of crisis is what motivates us to pedal on each day.”
Kosof was joined by fellow BC Sheriff Rob Crowder and Cpl, Andrew McCabe and Roxanne Johnson of the Nelson RCMP to cycle over 1,000 kilometers to raise funds and awareness for local children. Each rider must provide their own bike, train on their own time, volunteer at community events, and fundraise a minimum of $2,500 in order to participate.
The 2019 Ride will take the team over 1,000 km across the South Eastern corner of British Columbia over 10 days stopping in 26 communities.
Since inception, they’ve raised over $5.5 million through their signature event. With requests from families on the rise, they’re working even harder to support the local children who need it most.
Funds from the event support requests for medical equipment, transportation to Children’s Hospital, specialized therapies, learning & mobility aids.
As a part of their route, the team arrived in Nelson on Monday at the RCMP Detachment near the Big Orange Bridge.
“Our route covers a vast and mountainous corner of the province with unrelenting hills and inclement weather at times, but these riders know that on the other side of each mountain is a family who has benefitted from our fundraising efforts,” says Ride Captain Retired Staff Sergeant Major Julio Krenz.
“Our riders join the RCMP to help people and make a difference in their communities. On a day to day basis, officers are often faced with some of the harshest realities in this line of work, while also dealing with common policing shortfalls such as staffing shortages that can leave them tired and burnt out.
“For them, experiencing the gratitude from families who are helped by their efforts is often one of the highlights of their careers, and reminds them of why they joined our national police force.”
To follow the team along their journey or to make a donation please visit the website at www.copsforkids.org or follow along on Facebook and Instagram.