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Riding for a Cause: Elias’ ride to get kids to summer camps

The Cycling BC Targeted Athlete Mentorship Bursary Program was launched by Cycling BC in 2023 and was designed to support targeted athletes in Cycling BC’s High Performance pathway in pursuing training opportunities, fostering mentorship and community programs, and encouraging coaching development within cycling.

Athletes are required to take on mentorship or leadership roles within their cycling community as a means to enhance their skills, on and off the bike, and contribute to their local community. Furthermore, to support the growth of the sport, the program provides a structured model to foster the ongoing development of aspiring athletes and coaches in BC.

Elias’ story begins with a heartfelt mission – to provide underprivileged kids with an opportunity to experience the joy of summer camp experiences. Teaming up with his dad, Elias orchestrated a fundraising event aimed at fulfilling his mission.

As a passionate cyclist himself, the U19 targeted athlete from Cycling BC’s High Performance program assembled a team of 12 riders, and together, they set off on a remarkable 280-kilometre journey from Victoria to Quadra Island. While the trek was fueled by Cycling BC’s bursary, what got them over the finish line was the dream of getting kids to summer camps.

The entire planning phase was a major learning experience in and of itself for Elias. Managing teams, approaching sponsors, calculating the intricacies of nutrition for a long ride, devising schedules, organizing ride groups, aid stops and being relentless in reaching out to donors.

By the end of it, they raised funds totalling over $30,000 to sponsor the summer camp experiences of kids who might otherwise miss out on such opportunities.

“I am incredibly thankful for Cycling BC’s recognition of the volunteer work I invested within my cycling community to host this event,” says Elias. “I plan to put the funds earned through the bursary towards equipment that will help take my training and racing to the next level of competition.”

And so, Elias’ story became more than a successful fundraising event but also a story of dedication, leadership, and giving back to the community.

Thank you, Elias. Your efforts will have a tremendous ripple effect in the community, especially for those kids who can experience summer camps thanks to your vision.

Learn more about the Targeted Athlete Mentorship Bursary program.