The challenge is now in full swing as Michel Garant, paraplegic for 8 years now, crosses Canada using a Top End model, 27 speed adaptable strong arm bike, accompanied by Mollo, his faithful Mira Service Dog. Now in Northern Ontario, Michel is heading to Sault Ste. Marie in the next few days where he will make a short halt to meet the community.
Left physically challenged following an unfortunate snowboard accident, Michel has maintained his contagious joie de vivre and is more active and happier than ever. With this spectacular endeavour of 83 cities, 7,302 km in 90 days that did start in Vancouver on June 9, Michel will be the first paraplegic athlete to cross Canada on a strong arm bike and for a cause.
The task is quite daring but Michel is determined, with the support of his sponsors, to bring awareness to as many Canadians as possible to the fact that Mira offer free services by providing top quality specially trained dogs to individuals with one or many visual or motor disabilities, and to children presenting Pervasive Development Disorders such as autism.
Along with this extraordinary athletic challenge, Michel reiterates that Mira has given 46 dogs to Canadians living outside of Quebec and the Maritimes. In fact, 18 of Mira’s Service Dogs have been given in Ontario. In order to meet the ever expanding demand for Mira’s free Service Dogs, he is rolling out the first pan-Canadian campaign, calling upon the generosity of Canadians of all provinces.
Michel is reaching out to millions of Canadians and hoping to see lots of them cheering for him and donating to Mira’s Foundation as he passes through their community. Our aim is simply to create awareness, so that the citizens of Sault Ste. Marie notice his passage and eventually support Michel in his quest.
The avant-garde vision of its founder Eric St-Pierre has made Mira a pioneer and precursor in training Service Dogs for challenged people in a unique and innovative way.
Each year, approximately 180 new handicapped people are served, and follow-up services are provided to the users of over 800 dogs already in service. Mira has provided 2,000 guide dogs and service dogs since its creation in 1981. Each dog represents an investment of $30,000 and is given free of charge.
The Mira Foundation is a non-profit organization employing 83 people. Receiving no government funding, its annual financing depends entirely on fundraising events organized by thousands of volunteers and generous donors.
We thank you in advance for considering this news, while Michel himself wishes to see as many Canadians as possible coming out and cheering for him in his quest to cross our great country to raise funds for Mira.
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LOCAL2 Staff for local2 sault ste. marie
July 24th, 2012 at 1:05pm | Last Updated at 6:49pm