Matthew Abery photo

Kelowna Ride Don’t Hide raises $85,000

The CMHA honours two brothers during fundraiser

Cyclists pedaled to get loud during the Ride Don’t Hide fundraiser to bring awareness to the issue of mental health and suicide prevention.

“The event is a fundraiser but also raises community awareness and it’s a rallying point so we can all come together and get loud about mental health, reduce stigma and show, as a community, that we really support people with mental illness and families,” Jessica Samuels, communications and events manager at the Canadian Mental Health Association Kelowna said.

Related: Mental health awareness bike ride coming back to Kelowna

Locally known as the Payton and Dillon Budd Memorial Ride, 400 participants took off to raise dollars for programs and services with CMHA Kelowna. The ride reached their fundraising goal of $82,500 yesterday and organizers believe they will raise more funds today during the ride.

The event is named after two brothers, Payton and Dillon Budd, who died by suicide two years apart.

Their father, well-known local philanthropist Tom Budd, has spoken out about the challenge of mental illness and has donated and raised money for mental health initiatives and has raised awareness about the issue.

Related: Great Big Sea fame raises funds for CMHA

“I love to ride, and I am passionate about ending the silence,” said Budd. “Being a part of CMHA Kelowna’s Ride Don’t Hide was a perfect fit for my foundation and family.”

At 11:30 a.m. prizes will be announced and closing ceremonies will commence to celebrate removing the stigma of mental illness and depression.

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