July 22, 2013 --- On Wednesday, July 17, 2013, staff from Community Living Peterborough met with representatives from the local Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) to accept a sponsorship cheque for $4,000 to support operations for the iCan Bike week-long summer camp that was held at the Lakefield-Smith Community Centre from July 15, 2013 – July 19, 2013.
The unique five-day camp, hosted in collaboration with the Down Syndrome Association of Peterborough, Kerry’s Place Autism Services, Peterborough Green Up, B!KE: Peterborough Community Cycling Hub and Bridges Canada, helped to support, assist and teach youth, who live with an intellectual disability, to safely ride a conventional two-wheel bicycle.
"As a strong advocate for children's mental health, RBC is proud to support programs like iCan Bike who help to foster independence and develop confidence in our youth," said Mike Belliveau, Regional Vice President, Kawartha Lakeshore, RBC. "It is grassroots initiatives like these that make communities like Peterborough a better place to work and live in."
"RBC’s sponsorship, thankfully, funded the rental costs of the facility, the bike technician fees/equipment rental of the adapted bicycles, resources and recreational materials, as well as, the facilitation of the program itself. RBC not only provided us with a sponsorship, they also provided 20 youths with an opportunity that every youth should be able to experience," says Christine Burtch, Outcomes Facilitator with Community Living Peterborough, and the lead for iCan Bike. “Riding a two-wheel bicycle is a thrill, and builds self-confidence and independence. We thank RBC for their continued support."
During the camp, the US parent company of iCan Bike, iCan Shine, used a fleet of adapted bicycles, a specialized instructional program and trained staff to teach riders how to ride a traditional two-wheel bike. Riders took part in daily 75-minute sessions and over the course of the five-day camp, the adapted bikes were adjusted to gradually introduce more challenge to the riders at their individual pace. Campers also took part in art, literacy and music workshops throughout the rest of their day. The week concluded with a touching and inspiring award ceremony!