Mental health awareness bike ride coming back to Kelowna

CMHA’s Payton and Dillon Budd Memorial Ride to go June 24 in Kelowna

On June 24, the Kelowna chapter of the Canadian Mental Health Association is bringing its fundraising cycling event Ride Don’t Hide back to the community, to be known locally as The Payton and Dillon Budd Memorial Ride.

“At CMHA Kelowna, we want to let anyone struggling in silence to know they are not alone,” said Shelagh Turner, CMHA Kelowna executive director.

“That’s why we’re dedicating our Ride Don’t Hide event to the memory of two brothers in our community. The Payton and Dillon Budd Memorial Ride serves as a rallying point for us all and a reminder that we are not alone.”

Payton and Dillon Budd, both teenagers, took their own lives in separate incidents 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.

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

In a significant show of support for CMHA’s 100th anniversary, the Thomas Alan Budd Foundation is the title sponsor for the ride. The foundation is also sponsoring a group called Budd’s 100. Anyone can sign up, agree to raise a minimum of $100 and have their $40 registration fee waived. The Budd Foundation will match their $100 in fundraising.

Turner said there has been a significant shift in the community in recent years when it comes to the issue of mental health.

“Kelowna has become more focused and more purposeful in coming together to talk about the meaning and importance of one’s mental health, and building of community so people do not feel so isolated and alone,” she said.

Riders of all ages and abilities can register now for The Payton and Dillon Budd Memorial Ride June 24 at ridedonthide.com

The ride will start and finish at the Rotary Centre for the Arts and included a a 6.5-kilometres kids and family route, a 20- kilometre route or a 60-kilometre advanced route. Money raised will go to help provide essential programs and services in our community, as well as at workplaces and schools.

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