Cops for Kids rolls into town

Penticton will be among the stops on the first day of the annual Cops for Kids ride Sept. 11.

Cops for Kids riders from last year when they stopped in Penticton - Seanan Sharp

Cops for Kids riders from last year when they stopped in Penticton - Seanan Sharp

Penticton will be among the stops on the first day of the annual Cops for Kids ride Sept. 11.

The 25 riders and six-member support team are scheduled to arrive at the Penticton and Wine Country Visitor Centre at 553 Vees Drive about 3 p.m.

The group is made up mainly of members of enforcement agencies from the Southeast District who take part in the 10-day ride visiting 18 communities throughout southeastern B.C.

Along with dignitaries and community leaders, the special guests the team will hear are the kids or Little Ambassadors as they are called, who have benefited in some way through efforts of Cops for Kids.

The 2015 ride is presented through the Thomas Alan Budd Foundation.

“This is my first year with Cops for Kids, and I can’t wait to see the impact our donations are making in each community,” said Kelowna RCMP Const. Georgina Josefsson in a prepared statement. “These children require medical equipment, mobility and learning aids that aren’t covered by government funding, and Cops for Kids is able to provide these crucial funds because of this event. I’m honoured to serve in our community day to day, and I can’t wait to get on the road.”

The trip is a challenging one for participants both in terms of terrain, including two mountain passes  Anarchist Mountain and Blueberry-Paulson, and quite often inclement weather.

“These encounters will remind each rider of the challenges that some children our Ambassadors face on a daily basis,” said spokesperson Courtney King. “It will serve to keep them focused to complete their journey to help better the lives of these children.”

Each rider is required to raise a minimum of $2,000 and people can go online to sponsor a participant at copsforkids.org.

As well, in each host community, many businesses including hotels and restaurants help out to ensure as much money as possible goes to the children.

The ride is just one of the fundraising events held throughout the year by the organization.