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Mounties encourage Kelowna to ride, not hide

No one is more well versed in the conditions that Canadians with mental health issues face than the two groups taking part in the Ride Don’t Hide event slated for later this month.

The RCMP and The Canadian Mental Health Association have banded together to put on a community bike ride, aimed at awareness and funds for programs that help vulnerable area residents.

“A lot of times people suffering from mental illness are dealing with the RCMP,” said Scott Davis, with CMHA.

That means the two groups are often working in tandem to get those in need of intervention, into the right stream of the system.

What would help, however, is a little intervention before conditions spiral out of control.

Those who are finding themselves dealing with the RCMP often have exhibited signs of mental illness in the past, but aren’t accessing the right resources because they’re hiding their struggles, said Supt. Tim Head, the acting district officer of the Southeast district of the B.C. RCMP.

That’s why the two organizations working together to shine a light on mental illness and bust some damaging stigmas is a natural fit.

Head said the Kelowna Ride will be starting and finishing at the Rotary Centre for the Arts, 421 Cawston Avee.

Two cycling routes are available.

A seven km family ride along the downtown Rails with Trails corridor will start shortly after the 40 km ride through the Mission.

Registration will start at:

• 8 a.m for the 40 km Route

• 8:30 a.m for the 7 km

• 9 a.m. for the family ride.

For more information check out www.ridedonthide.com. You can click on Kelowna and make a donation as well.

kmichaels@kelownacapnews.com

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