‘Wheels in Action’ to Raise Awareness, Funds for Spinal Cord Injury

June 03, 2011 - News Release

The University of Guelph will host Guelph Wheels in Action June 12 to raise money, support and awareness for people with spinal cord injuries (SCI).

The event is a new spin on the annual Wheels in Motion, started by Olympic wheelchair champion Rick Hansen and held by U of G since 2004. The national event will resume in 2012.

“We wanted to keep the momentum of the past seven years going,” said Cyndy McLean, director of the Health and Performance Centre, who brought the original Wheels event to Guelph.

Wheels in Motion has helped raise nearly $150,000 locally to support numerous programs for Guelph-area people with SCI.

Guelph Wheels in Action will include a 2½-kilometre walk-roll-run, a wheelchair relay challenge, a free barbecue, entertainment and children’s activities. Participants collect pledges individually or as a team. The Canadian Disability Resource Council (a registered charitable organization) will help process pledges and donations (in person and online) and will provide tax receipts for donations of $20 or more.

The event begins at noon at the University’s Athletics Centre; registration starts at 10:30 a.m.

Funds will be used for local programs, including the SpinFit exercise program at St. Joseph’s Health Centre and various initiatives for people with SCI.

In previous years, funds raised have purchased new wheelchairs and adaptive equipment, a ceiling track lift system for KidsAbility, fitness equipment for the Victoria Road Recreation Centre, and an adjustable medical table for U of G's Student Health Services.

“But Wheels in Motion is about more than improving the quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries,” said McLean, a former marathon runner who became paraplegic following a 2003 accident.

“It’s also about raising awareness and inspiring those around you to make a difference, and that’s exactly what people have done by supporting this event.”

To make a donation or for more information, visit the Guelph Wheels in Action website.

Cyndy McLean
Health and Performance Centre
519-824-4120, Ext. 53319

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338, lhunt@uoguelph.ca, or Deirdre Healey, Ext. 56982, d.healey@exec.uoguelph.ca.

University of Guelph
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1