Have you ever been on a long bike ride? To the point of getting blisters and a good sunburn? Check out this hero, his name is Michael Schratter, a Vancouver school teacher and newspaper columnist who set out on a 40,000 km journey across 30 countries all to raise funds for mental illness!
Along his journey, titled Ride Don’t Hide, he’s sharing stories of mental illness and bringing awareness to the stigma surrounding it. All funds raised will go towards children and youth suffering from mental illness.
In an interview with The Vancouver Sun, Michael, who was diagnosed with hypomania (a mild form of bipolar disorder) shared that there is a stigma around those with mental illness and it was time to bring it out of the shadows.
“Hollywood and the media have painted mental illness in a really scary light, that the mentally ill are dangerous. The only time the mentally ill make the newspaper is when something horrific happens so it’s no wonder that everyday people like myself don’t want to talk about it.” (The Vancouver Sun, September 16, 2011)
Michael’s ride started on August 17th, 2011 and will end on November 12, 2011, just 10 days away! Visit his website today to donate, add to the stories being shared or just to leave a message of support.
It’s exciting to see individuals step up to make a difference in a big way. Way to go Michael!
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The Vancouver Sun
BY KIM PEMBERTON
SEPTEMBER 16, 2011