The Cops for Kids cyclists rode through Grand Forks on the weekend as part of their 10 day trip through the Southern Interior of B.C.
The riders presented local seven year-old Jaeden with an iPad to help him learn at school. The crew had dinner at Omega Restaurant on Saturday night and stayed at the Ramada Inn before leaving for Castlegar Sunday morning.
Constables Rob Gardner, from Castlegar, and Roy Davidson, from Kamloops, were able to present Jaeden with the iPad at his home in Grand Forks. Jaeden, who struggles with a severe learning disability as a result of complications at birth, will now be able to use his iPad to help with function with his peers at school.
Jaeden is very excited to share his new learning programs and is already off to a great start to his grade 2 year, said his mom Sara.
For Gardner, meeting kids like Jaeden drives home the reason why the riders give up their time and effort for the ride.
“The experience I had with the ride last year (his first), meeting the kids, coming into the communities and seeing the support the communities give the Cops for Kids ride is just amazing,” he said. “I was able to do a lot of donations around Castlegar giving out tricycles and special bikes to children in need. The feeling I get from that is just phenomenal.”
One experience Gardner recalled was meeting a six year-old girl from Kelowna, who’s family couldn’t afford hearing aids for her. Cops for Kids was able to provide the hearing aids to allow the youngster to hear properly.
“She wanted to give back to Cops for Kids so what she did was made these amazing flowers out of pipe cleaners,” he said. “When we were leaving the Sandman in Kelowna, she helped each rider put the flowers on their bike. Just her, at age six, being able to understand what Cops for Kids has done for her and her mom being able to explain that to her was a phenomenal feeling. That’s exactly why I do it. To see those kids come up to us with big smiles on their faces, knowing what we did for them, it’s an unreal feeling. It really keeps us going.”
The riders started the Cops for Kids ride in Kelowna on Sept. 6 and will travel through the Southern Interior around past Revelstoke and down back into Kelowna finishing on Sept. 15.