Eden Health Care Foundation’s 14th annual Head for the Hills took place over the weekend. The bike ride for mental health follows a 36 km stretch of trail and road through a section of the Pembina Hills near Morden. Participants can choose between the road route or trail.
Eden Foundation’s Director of Development, Earl Reimer says they were astonished with the support for this year’s event. He says the turnout and money raised far exceed what they every expected. He says they thought last year would already be a banner year that would be virtually unsustainable. “But the reality is the community had more faith in this maybe than I did. We are humbled and awed. We had 221 cyclists, and we had more than $152,000 in donations.”
Reimer said the total raised is based solely on rider donations and fundraising.
Reimer says the foundation is all about hope, healing, and community, and the bike ride is evidence of the community providing hope and healing to the ones that need it the most.
Carolann Braun has participated in nearly every head for the hills. Aside from the fact she loves biking, she said Eden has been a great resource for two of her siblings that struggle with mental health issues. “They’ve helped my siblings come back to basically being able to participate in society.”
Funds raised through head for the hills goes to support programs and projects for Eden Health Care Services that are not funded by the government.
Money raised through the 2016 Head for the Hills have been earmarked for the following initiatives:
- An Aqua-cise program run out of Community Choices in Winkler
- Buying books and other resources for The Wellness Library in Steinbach’s Eden office
- Provide resources for much-needed renovations and supplies at Pathway Community Mental Health office in Winkler
- Re-shingling Wilson Courts apartment complex in Steinbach
- Artwork at a number of locations including Eden Mental Health Centre.