He loves his cycling and he’s passionate about the cause – not to mention the course of the Bobbin Head Cycle Classic, which winds through some of Sydney’s most spectacular scenery. The State member for Hornsby, Matt Kean, has registered for The Bobbo.
A keen cyclist (no pun intended), Matt is eager to get in early to raise funds – and suicide awareness – for Lifeline Harbour to Hawkesbury, which is a major partner with the four Rotary clubs that run the event.
“I’m very familiar with the ride. It’s one of the best cycle routes in Sydney,” Matt Kean said. “It’s just so beautiful – right through Ku-ring-gai National Park – with views out to the Hawkesbury. The added bonus of supporting a great organization that I’m very passionate about was one that was too good to pass up.”
A Special Reason To Ride
When delivering his maiden speech in State Parliament five years ago, Matt Kean talked about the death by suicide of 18-year-old student, Mike Powell, who had worked on his election campaign.
“That was devastatingly painful,” he said. “Mike was a great achiever on the sporting field and in the classroom. I guess I was devastated, as a friend, that I wasn’t able to grab him and tell him it was going to be okay.”
Since entering Parliament, Matt has organised an annual mental health youth forum, with the help of the Ku-ring-gai Youth Development Group (KYDS), to educate school students about the issue . He says they’ve brought together up to 500 students at a time and believes the forums have made a huge difference to the community. KYDS is also a beneficiary of the Bobbo – a second reason for Matt to ride.
“There’s clearly no silver bullet when it comes to the issue of dealing with suicide. However, I’m still of the very firm view that the more we can talk about it, the more we can breakdown the stigma associated with it, the more we can encourage people to understand it and get the help that they need if they are in a dark space,” Mr Kean said, noting that Lifeline was critical to reducing the suicide rate and providing an outlet for people most in need.
“So, you know, I’m cycling up a couple of hills but that’s not hard work at all compared with what Lifeline does every day of the week. Every dollar we raise in The Bobbo takes us a step further to supporting and resourcing Lifeline to help them defeat suicide”
The 2017 Bobbin Head Cycle Classic will be on Sunday March 26, 2017. With ride lengths of 27, 57, 80 and 104 kms, the event caters for cyclists of all levels of fitness. Riders can enter as an individual or part of a team. The event also includes a timed uphill 4 km time trial with prizes awarded to fastest individuals and teams. Earlybird entry specials are available until Australia Day. Visit www.bobbinheadcycleclassic.com.au to book.