Portage Ontario hosted its third annual Pedal for Portage fundraiser this fall to raise funds for Portage’s residential drug addiction rehabilitation centre in Elora, Ontario. To date, the event has raised over $180,000, which helps teens between the ages of 14 and 18 find freedom from addiction.

In previous years, cyclists and volunteers of all ages and skill levels took on the scenic trails and country roads that altogether make up the Centre Wellington region. Logistics looked a little different this year, as riders could not go out as groups. Instead, cyclists were encouraged to participate virtually for the entire week of September 14th. This format made it so that participants across Ontario could walk, run, or cycle all on their own time. “We had 26 participants challenge themselves and collectively raised more than $25,000 in peer-to-peer donations and sponsorships,” said Ashley-Ann Maginnis, manager of development at the Elora centre.

The tremendous support for this year’s virtual event not only helped raise funds, but it also created community awareness around the issue of substance abuse. “This ride continues to bring the cycling community together year after year to support youth in Ontario,” said Maginnis. “This year, COVID-19 stopped the riders from cycling together, but it didn’t stop their commitment to helping youth suffering from substance abuse-related problems to overcome their dependencies and live healthy, happy, and productive lives.” During these difficult times, this level of support, community, and generosity is truly above and beyond.

Pedal for Portage continues to be possible thanks to the generosity of many participants, donors, and sponsors, including Alliance Roofing, Alpha Graphics and Signs, Barry Cullen, Linton Pasture Pork, Nick’s Quick Delivery, and RLB Charted Professional Accountant.

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