While many Torontonians were having a sleepy Sunday morning, about 260 were geared up and ready to go. At 9 a.m., they left Allan Gardens to the sounds of bells and cheering, embarking on a six-day bicycle ride to raise money for the Toronto People With AIDS Foundation (PWA).
"I initially heard about the ride through an ex-lover who is impacted with the stigma of HIV/AIDS," explained Simon Lysnes. "And to see what he was doing — riding all the way to Montreal, 600 kilometres — was really inspiring. So the next year I signed up, and I've been doing it ever since. This will be my ninth ride."
Todd Davies, co-chair of the Friends for Life Bike Rally, told CBC News that the event has raised more than $14 million for PWA in its 18 years. Founded in 1987, PWA provides social and practical services for community members living with HIV/AIDS.