Ride to Connect!

What is Our Initiative?

We are a group of friends with an interest in elderly care, exercise, and the importance of social interaction, and we are campaigning to raise funds for the HelpAge Canada Seniors Can Connect! Digital Literacy Program. This program provides tablets and technical support for isolated seniors. The 7 of us pledge to collectively cycle a distance of 9,306km, the extreme width of Canada, over the summer months (June 1-August 31, 2020). We invite you to join in on the ride as part of our Ride to Connect community. Our aim is to reach 200,000km with 100% of the proceeds going directly to this program. We want to support vulnerable seniors and help them connect with family, friends, supporters or to access health care or other services. More importantly, we invite you to join in on the ride and to help raise awareness for the positive impact technological literacy and access can have on our Canadian elderly population. Join our club page on Strava, hop on the bike, ride as much as you want, and share your rides on social media with the hashtag #RidetoConnect. We’re excited to see you out there as we Ride to Connect!


Who Are We?

We’re not cyclists by any stretch of the imagination, but we’re a group of University of Ottawa medical students excited to help Canadian seniors become more autonomous and independent through technology. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us how important technology is to remain connected to the outside world and we are striving to help Canadian seniors have this opportunity as well.

Why Is This Important?

Technology is the de facto way to connect to the world and our reliance on the Internet has essentially become fundamental in many aspects of our lives. Unfortunately, many Canadian seniors still lack the necessary tools and skills to benefit from the online world in the same way younger generations do, “Why should the young generation have all the fun? After all it is the older generations’ nurturing which has led to where we (young people) are right now!”. Whether it is by maintaining social interaction with family and friends through videoconferencing, having better access to telehealth services, being able to shop for essential goods and services, or having accessible games, puzzles, videos, and e-books, technology can be the gateway to making a senior feel more empowered and independent. We are raising funds for the Seniors Can Connect! Digital Literacy Program which provides preconfigured tablets with features to make them easier to learn and more accessible for seniors. Additionally, HelpAge Canada through their partner, Connected Canadians, offers free 1on1 classes and IT support to help seniors learn how to put their tablets to good use, keep them clean, and well maintained.

  • Join our community Strava page, enjoy the summer weather on your bike, and have your bike rides count towards our community distance total. Share you bike rides on social media with the hashtag #RidetoConnect
  • Follow us on:
  • Reach out to friends or family members who want to develop their tech skills or who have other barriers to accessing the technology they’re interested in. Let them know about the Seniors Can Connect! Digital Literacy Program.

P.S. While biking, please remember to be safe and to follow all social distancing and safety guidelines. We hope that this will be a fun, safe initiative where we can grow a community looking to exercise and promote a good cause. We’re excited to have you join in!

We'd like to acknowledge some of our friends who have volunteered their time to help us make this vision become a reality. 

Marketing: Amy Yu, Sonia Dancey, Karine Riad, Giuliana Tanel
Graphic Design: Sarah Furgiuele

Please contact us at ridetoconnect@gmail.com if you are interested in sponsorship opportunities!