A pair of Cycling Without Age trishaws will soon be rolling into Rossland and Trail bringing with them “the right to wind in your hair” for seniors and persons with disabilities.
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A trishaw is a pedal assist electric bike that is outfitted for two passengers in the front and one pilot rider in the back. The Cycling Without Age movement describes the trishaw program as an opportunity to build bridges between generations while reinforcing trust, respect and the social glue of society.
“The trishaws will enrich the lives of seniors or anyone with mobility issues by helping them stay active in our communities and enjoy nature from the front of a specially designed bike — a trishaw,” states Cycling Unlimited, the Lower Columbia chapter of Cycling Without Age.
This local chapter was able to order the two bikes after successfully fundraising $43,000 for the cause, which was greeted with open arms by Lower Columbia residents as over 80 per cent of the total was donated by individuals from the local community.
A crowd-funding effort raised $17,500 and a further $16,000 was raised through a matching funds campaign whereby a donor doubled all individual donations up to $8000.
“It means so much to me that our community is so supportive of this program,” said Diana Daghofer, co-chair of Cycling Unlimited.
“The Rossland trishaw will be named ‘Hermi’s Ride’ in memory of my Mom, who passed away last September.”
Grants totalling over $25,000 were received from Columbia Basin Trust, Rossland’s Health Care Auxiliary (the Thrift Shop), the United Way of Trail and District, Teck Trail Operations, Nelson and District Credit Union and the United Steelworkers Union, Local 480.
“A very generous grant from Columbia Basin Trust put us over to top,” says Marilyn Nelson, treasurer and secretary of Cycling Unlimited.
“A number of organizations recognize that social isolation is a very real issue in our community and they have stepped up to help us address it through Cycling Without Age.”
While Cycling Unlimited now has the resources to buy two trishaws, ongoing operating funds will be needed for the program. Donations can be made at the Rossland branch of the Nelson & District Credit Union or the KBRH Health Foundation in Trail (Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital).
Cycling Without Age began in Denmark in 2012.
To find out more about the local program, including how to volunteer, contact Diana Daghofer at firstname.lastname@example.org or 250-362-5810 or Marilyn Nelson at email@example.com.