November 12, 2014 (Montreal, QC) – Cyclo Nord-Sud celebrated its 15th anniversary in a truly memorable fashion on Saturday, October 18, at l’Espace La Fontaine (a not-for-profit restaurant in the Montreal park that bears the same name). In a festive, friendly atmosphere, 150 supporters, partners, volunteers and members gathered to honour the organization’s accomplishments. The presentation of Cyclo Nord-Sud’s 50,000th bike by the actor and conference speaker Hugo Dubé was the highlight of the evening. The event raised more than $15,000, which exceeded projections.
MP Hélène Laverdière (NPD), opposition spokesperson for international development, and Michel Labrecque, President and CEO of Montreal’s Olympic Park, were among the noted guests.
The Morissette family offered a lovely homage to sister Claire, the founder of Cyclo Nord-Sud who passed away in 2007. Claire was deeply committed to promoting green transportation in Montreal. A dedicated activist for more than 20 years along with Robert Silverman in a group of like-minded militants called Le Monde à bicyclette, she contributed greatly to the growth of cycling in the city. Claire was also responsible for implementing the Communauto car-sharing system in Montreal, and wrote the book Deux roues, un avenir (Two wheels, one future). To honour her contributions to the cycling community, the de Maisonneuve Boulevard bike path running through downtown Montreal was named for her.
Cyclo Nord-Sud recovers unused bikes in the North and ships them South to disadvantaged communities where they serve as tools for development. Volunteers across Quebec and in Ontario have organized a total of 730 bike drives, since the first one was held in 1999. These bike drives encourage the reuse of durable goods, mobilize people of all ages and create awareness about the benefits of cycling, environmental protection and international solidarity.
In Africa and Latin America, Cyclo Nord-Sud has worked with local partners to create bike projects in 18 countries, thereby promoting mobility, civic responsibility, and women’s empowerment, as well as helping to raise funds for health and education initiatives in several communities.