Showing an unmatched commitment to end AIDS amid the COVID-19 pandemic, AIDS/LifeCycle announced today a new charity event, TogetheRide, geared for cyclists of all ages and abilities worldwide in which they raise critical funds and collectively pedal 1.2 million miles (representing the 1.2 million people in the Unites States living with HIV and AIDS). Organizers have set June 2021 as the deadline for all riders—ranging from longtime AIDS/Lifecycle participants to home exercise bike enthusiasts, road cyclists, mountain bikers, indoor cyclists, bike commuters, and even tricyclists—to fulfill the ambitious challenge at the riders’ own pace and time commitment.
“TogetheRide is a new way to ride and connect with our vibrant, diverse, and resilient community between now and the end of June—bringing people together even while we’re physically apart,” said AIDS/LifeCycle Ride Director Tracy Evans. “Whether you’re 70 or 7 years old, whether you’re committed to raising $3,000 or $300, or whether you’re able to pedal 545 miles or 54.5 miles, your individual contribution matters to the whole with every mile, every moment, every dollar set at your own pace. We are riding on new roads, but we are still raising critical funds for the same cause: to end AIDS. So, let’s get set to grab life by the handlebars!”
To enhance the TogetheRide experience, participants will download the TogetheRide smartphone app which helps them track their miles, check their progress, earn badges when a fundraising milestone is attained, and fundraise directly with their friends, family, and social media networks.
TogetheRide is earmarked to be the second annual signature event produced by AIDS/LifeCycle in addition to the original seven-day, 545-mile bike journey from San Francisco to Los Angeles. Similar to the weeklong AIDS/LifeCycle ride, money raised through TogetheRide will benefit the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the HIV and AIDS-related services of the Los Angeles LGBT Center. NOTE: The 2021 AIDS/LifeCycle ride, scheduled for June 6–12, has been canceled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“The need for vital HIV and AIDS services and care is as critical as ever. From the earliest days of the AIDS epidemic through today, our community has risen to every challenge, coming together to care for those in need and fighting for those impacted by HIV and AIDS. The COVID-19 pandemic has stopped us from doing so many things, but it cannot stop our resilience and tenacity,” said Los Angeles LGBT Center CEO Lorri L. Jean. “The TogetheRide gives everyone the opportunity to get connected and help continue the fight against HIV and AIDS.”
“COVID-19 has deeply impacted San Francisco’s progress toward ending the HIV epidemic, and now more than ever, we need to raise awareness and funds for services that will save people’s lives,” said San Francisco AIDS Foundation CEO Joe Hollendoner. “San Francisco AIDS Foundation is excited to invite all of you to engage with our mission in this exciting new way—the TogetheRide is a bold undertaking that will help us build a future where health justice is achieved for every person living with or at risk for HIV.”
AIDS/LifeCycle raises important awareness about the ongoing HIV/AIDS epidemic, in addition to funding critical services such as HIV testings and screenings for other sexually transmitted infections, HIV medical care, prevention services, and more. In addition to the 1.2 million people living with HIV and AIDS in the United States, 1 in 7 people do not know they are living with the disease.
For more information, including registration, about TogetheRide, visit togetheride.org.