Published on Sep 26, 2022 at 22:37
Right to wind in your hair: Cycling Without Age takes ride down Unionville Main Street
By Scarlett Liu, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
A free riding day was held on Sept. 9 in Markham’s Unionville Main Street area, which allowed older adults who cannot cycle for themselves to take a free ride in an electric-assist bike called the trishaw.
The rides, piloted by trained volunteers, provide opportunities to the older adults to connect with neighbours and nature.
The event is part of a corporate social responsibility initiative named Project Spotlight, launched by BrokerTeam Insurance, aiming to shine a light on the community’s hidden needs by supporting small, local community organizations.
Each year, they support and help to promote one to three small local charities. This year, they are helping a group in Hamilton called Cycling Without Age — Hamilton and Burlington Chapter.
To inspire the local communities within the York Region, Project Spotlight invited the Hamilton and Burlington chapter to visit Markham-Richmond Hill to train volunteers on the trishaws and offer free rides for the local older adults.
“We’d like the readers to know about the existence of the Cycling Without Age movement, and hopefully, could inspire some to start a local chapter for Markham and York Region,” said Alfred Sung, engagement manager of BrokerTeam Insurance.
Jan Finch is one of the passengers from Hamilton, she describes the riding experience on the three-wheeled electric-assist bicycles as awesome. “People whose movements are restricted, they could get on this and go see and enjoy the nature.”
“The past couple of years have brought society’s most vulnerable populations and their mental wellness to the forefront,” comments William Chan, president of BrokerTeam Insurance, “We hope that through special visit to York Region, more people will be encouraged to get involved and do more.”
Cycling Without Age is an international program started in 2012 in Denmark, and now spreads to more than 52 countries. There are 60 chapters in Canada. The program gives older adults wind in their hair, the ability to connect with nature and the chance to share their stories.
More information about Project Spotlight 2022, is available at theprojectspotlight.ca/project-spotlight-2022/.