7,000km Journey for YMCA Strong Kids

Don Patterson is planning a self-supported solo bike ride this July starting in Vancouver and finishing in St. John’s NL to raise funds for local YMCAs so more kids can become physically active. His target is to complete the ride in 28 days, which means an average daily ride of more than 250 km!


Don is a 58 year old grandfather with 3 adult children who participated in numerous YMCA programs while they were growing up. He strongly believes that all kids should be able to access Y programs irrespective of their physical abilities or financial resources.


Working with the YMCAs across Canada, the objectives are to:

  • Increase awareness on the importance of physical activity for our youth
  • Raise funds for the local YMCAs so more kids can participate in their great programs

The Challenges for our Youth

Study after study highlight the many positive effects of children who are active: lower rates of obesity and diabetes; higher academic performance; lower rates of juvenile delinquency; increased self-confidence. Yet opportunities for kids to be active & have fun are being reduced or eliminated. Obesity rates have soared and a recent study showed that teenagers, for the first time ever, have a lower life expectancy than their parents.

The Y Solution

Today, everyone is asking “How do we help our kids to become physically active?” Simply put, the Y has the solution: the facilities; a highly recognized and respected brand with a history of over 160 years; an inclusive and welcoming philosophy; dedicated staff and volunteers.



As Don is funding the ride himself, 100% of  every donation goes to the Y and their great youth programs. To donate online: Go to Don’s blog and click on “Donating to your local Y”. Income tax receipts will be automatically provided. To donate by cheque please mark “Don’s Ride” in the memo area on your cheque and make payable to (customize for your local Y)