Seventh Annual Ride for Karen Cycling Event Raises More Than $270,000 for Children with Cancer

    MAPLE, ON, Sept. 8 /CNW/ - Cycling enthusiasts from across the GTA and
surrounding areas took part in yesterday's Ride for Karen event, the seventh
and most successful ride for this annual fundraiser. The more than 425 riders
-- from pre-schoolers taking part in the first Kids' Fun Ride, to cyclists
completing a 'century ride' (100 mile) -- succeeded in raising more than
$270,000 to send kids with cancer to camp.
    Scotiabank, presenting sponsor of the 2008 Ride for Karen, provides
support and sponsorship for the operation of the event while also helping to
create more awareness, increase the number of participants and raise
additional funds for the camps. One hundred per cent of the money raised from
this year's event goes to Camp Oochigeas, Camp Quality and Camp Trillium to
send children to camp and provide the required support and treatments during
their stay. This year's Ride for Karen will send more than 300 children with
cancer to summer camp.
    "Scotiabank is proud to support the communities in which we live and work
and Ride for Karen is another way that we help build support for many local
causes," said Aileen Yhap, Scotiabank District Vice-President, GTA North.
"Over the past seven years, Ride for Karen has become a wonderful expression
of the community spirit. We want to congratulate the volunteers and
participants that made this year's ride a success."
    Ride for Karen was started by Karen's sons, Kirk and Kris, shortly after
her death from breast cancer in July 2002. Since then, Ride for Karen has
grown into one of Ontario's premiere cycling events.
    "This ride started as a way for us to grieve but it has turned into so
much more," said Kirk Tobias. "Ride for Karen is a celebration of my mom's
life and a metaphor for her battle - and it also is a way for people that have
been touched by the disease, cancer survivors, and families who have lost
loved ones to help others living with the disease."
    The 2008 Ride for Karen featured three courses, a 25 km course for
intermediate cyclists and a 160 km (100 mile 'century') route for advanced
riders and new this year was the Kids' Fun Ride for kids 2 - 12 years of age.
Participants raised funds through pledges and many dedicate their ride to a
child or loved one affected by cancer.
    In Canada, approximately 1,400 children are diagnosed with cancer each
year and another 10,000 are already living with cancer or its long-term
    "We could not run this event without the support of Scotiabank, our
sponsors and volunteers," said Kris Tobias. "From the York, Peel, South Simcoe
and Ontario Provincial Police who volunteer their time to the dedication of
those who spend hours preparing food for the riders, this event is a success
because of them."

    Ride for Karen

    Started in 2002, Ride for Karen ( is a yearly
cycling event that is held as a tribute to the life and legacy of Karen Tobias
and to raise money for charities that help people living with cancer, and
those who care for them. In the last seven years, Ride for Karen has raised
over $675,000 which has been used to help build and furnish new cancer care
facilities, provide much needed resources for cancer support centres and send
kids with cancer to camp.


    Scotiabank is committed to supporting the communities in which we live
and work, both in Canada and abroad. Recognized as a leader internationally
and among Canadian corporations for its charitable donations and philanthropic
activities, in 2007 the Bank provided more than $43 million in sponsorships
and donations to a variety of projects and initiatives, primarily in the areas
of healthcare, education, social services and arts and culture. Visit us
online at

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For further information: Anne Adamson, Gina Kohn, (416) 203-2223,,

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