FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The pandemic has taken a toll, so local residents are ready to roll
Ride Don’t Hide mental health fundraiser goes virtual through all of June
Brampton, ON: May 28, 2021 – More than 45 per cent of Ontario residents report worsening mental health since the onset of the pandemic, which came with school closures, lockdowns, social isolation and economic insecurity. In response, the nation’s largest mental health bike ride, Ride Don’t Hide, is bringing people together to raise funds in support of the mental health and well-being of our hardest hit community members, while boosting their own moods through movement.
Now in its 10th anniversary year, Ride Don’t Hide is “rolling” with the times and evolving its local rides into the virtual physical activity challenge of your choice. A Ride Don’t Hide mobile app allows participants to connect with teammates, track their activity, fundraise, spread the word, and participate in weekly challenges throughout June all while on the go through their smartphone. Participants from across Canada will set a personal challenge to ride, run, walk, dance, or even meditate, for at least 330 minutes throughout the month of June, to support CMHA’s vital community mental health programs and services in one of its 330 locations near you.
“The pandemic has been hard, but the silver lining is that more people are aware of their own mental health, and more willing to talk freely about their stresses and struggles,” says David Smith, CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association Peel Dufferin. “People are displaying great resilience and courage in this time of crisis, and this is helping bring mental health into the open.”
This year, local riders—and spinners, walkers, runners, yogis, meditators and other mental health champions—will raise funds to support programs offered by CMHA Peel Dufferin.
“I love the fact that the Ride Don’t Hide event combines the fundraising and stewardship of the CMHA while encouraging physical exercise which is vital to mental health as well,” says Shahrukh Shah, 2021 Ride Don’t Hide Greater Toronto participant. “I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2016 and through my recovery process became very empathetic to the mental health issues many people face. As a result, I am a very passionate mental health advocate. I ride because I know what it is like to live with a mental illness and I want to continue to break down the stigma around mental health by being an example of someone who lives and thrives with bipolar disorder. So far I have raised $3225 of my $5000 goal!”
“People can set their own goals and move in their own way, on their own time, but it all rolls up to more timely, more accessible mental health help when people need it,” says David Smith, CEO of the Canadian Mental Health Association Peel Dufferin. “Find the movement or exercise that suits you and join your community to raise money, raise your heart rate and raise your spirits!”
To find out more, please visit www.ridedonthide.com/greatertoronto. CMHA Peel Dufferin and CMHA Toronto have partnered for the Greater Toronto Ride Don’t Hide event.
About Ride Don’t Hide
Ride Don’t Hide is the largest mental health bike ride in Canada, raising over $10 million dollars in the past decade for community-based Canadian Mental Health Association mental health programs and services.
About CMHA Peel Dufferin
Canadian Mental Health Association Peel Dufferin Branch offers services to those 16+ experiencing an addictions or mental health crisis, seniors with dementia, those navigating the court systems, people who are homeless or facing imminent homelessness and family and caregivers. www.cmhapeeldufferin.ca
About the Canadian Mental Health Association
Founded in 1918, the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) is the most established, most extensive community mental health organization in Canada. Through a presence in more than 330 communities across every province and one territory, CMHA provides advocacy, programs and resources that help to prevent mental health problems and illnesses, support recovery and resilience, and enable all Canadians to flourish and thrive. For more information, please visit www.cmha.ca
For more information or to reach a spokesperson, please contact:Siobhan Kukolic Communications Officer (416) 521-5387