Bell today announced the 82 Community Champions for Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk who will play an integral role in welcoming Clara Hughes into their communities during her 110-day ride around Canada to help raise awareness and action in mental health and reduce the stigma around mental illness.
On her national bicycle tour through every province and territory, Canada’s six-time Olympic cycling and speed-skating medallist Clara Hughes will invite people in communities large and small into the mental health conversation and share her own story of mental health challenges.
Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk will span 12,000 kilometres over the course of 110 days, beginning in Toronto March 14, 2014, visiting 95 communities and concluding in Ottawa on Canada Day, July 1.
“Our Community Champions are an incredible group of Canadians dedicated to helping achieve a stigma-free Canada,” said Clara. “I want to thank them for their passion and commitment to growing the mental health conversation. Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk would not be possible without them.”
Events across the country will be supported by local Community Champions, skilled team builders who are knowledgeable about their local mental health community. Each Community Champion has their own distinct story but all share a common goal of increasing awareness of the mental health challenge and reducing the stigma around mental illness. Each Community Champion will engage with others in their communities to build unique and meaningful events around Clara’s Big Ride that will directly benefit local mental health efforts. The complete list of Community Champions can be found at Bell.ca/ClarasBigRide.
“Community Champions are tremendous leaders who are working at a grassroots level to make a positive difference in their own communities, growing awareness, acceptance and action in mental health issues,” said Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let’s Talk. “We are thrilled that these remarkable individuals have joined Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk and applaud them for their invaluable leadership role in growing the conversation around mental health.”
Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk will also engage with Canadian youth, the next generation to carry the mental health conversation forward. At schools and youth organizations across the nation, young people will have the opportunity to hear first-hand from Clara, share in the mental health discussion, and develop new ideas to grow the conversation and fight the stigma in their own communities.
Clara’s Big Ride Jersey
Clara also unveiled her Clara’s Big Ride Jersey produced by Pearl Izumi and designed with Clara’s guidance. To be worn by Clara during her 110-day journey across Canada, the jersey will be available for purchase in early 2014 with proceeds donated to Bell Let’s Talk partner Kids Help Phone.
Share in the Ride
Every Canadian can participate in Clara’s Big Ride for Bell Let’s Talk through community events and social media. For more information, please visit Bell.ca/ClarasBigRide or follow the latest Ride news on Facebook at Facebook.com/BellLetsTalk or on Twitter at @Bell_LetsTalk.
Bell Let’s Talk Day is January 28
The Bell Let's Talk mental health initiative is a national charitable program that promotes mental health across Canada with significant funding for community care, research and workplace best practices, and fights the stigma around mental illness with the high-profile Bell Let's Talk Day.
Set for January 28, 2014, the fourth annual Bell Let's Talk Day invites Canadians to join the conversation and help end the stigma around mental illness. On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell donates 5 cents for every text sent and long distance call made by Bell and Bell Aliant customers, every tweet using #BellLetsTalk, and every Facebook share of the Bell Let's Talk Day image. To date, Bell has already committed to invest $62,043,289.30 in Canadian mental health based on Bell Let’s Talk Day participation.
Bell is Canada's largest communications company, providing consumers and business customers with wireless, TV, Internet, home phone and business communications services. Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in television, radio and digital media. Bell is wholly owned by Montréal's BCE Inc. (TSX, NYSE: BCE). For more information, please visit Bell.ca.
Bell Media Relations
Mental Health Foundation of Nova Scotia
President and CEO