Gavin Mill Photo

Gavin Mills is a cancer patient at the QEII Health Sciences Centre and a participant of BMO Ride for Cancer. To date, more than $5.7 million net has been raised by the BMO Ride community, in support of local cancer care at the QEII. PHOTO CREDIT: Mike Tompkins.

On March 3, registration opens for the eighth annual BMO Ride for Cancer (formerly Ride for Cancer powered by BMO Bank of Montreal), Atlantic Canada’s largest one-day cycling fundraising event that’s taking place on Oct. 1.

This dynamic movement raises money to transform cancer care in our region — and thanks to new title sponsor BMO, it’s bound to be bigger and better than ever in 2022.

“We’re excited about our ability to invest more in BMO Ride and have a bigger impact on cancer care in Atlantic Canada, in partnership with the QEII Foundation,” says Justin Scully, BMO’s Regional President, Personal Banking Atlantic. “BMO’s purpose is to boldly grow the good in business and in life, and BMO Ride for Cancer is the perfect manifestation of that.”

Starting in 2022, BMO has made a five-year commitment as title sponsor, which reflects its vision to lead and catalyze transformational change in cancer care for all Canadians.

“This commitment speaks to our belief that BMO Ride for Cancer has the potential to grow even more, and contribute to world-leading treatments that are being developed right here in Halifax at the QEII Health Sciences Centre,” says Scully.

Hosted by the QEII Foundation, since the event’s inception in 2015, more than $5.7 million net has been raised to support the full spectrum of cancer care, including helping to purchase vital equipment and new technologies, at the QEII.

For example, a state-of-the-art Cancer Therapy Preparation Lab, dedicated to the preparation of all drugs for the treatment and support of QEII cancer patients, is slated to open this spring. And while Nova Scotia was once the only province in Canada that didn’t have endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) technology, which provides a safer and less-invasive option for diagnosing lung cancer and lymphoma, thanks to the BMO Ride for Cancer community, it now does.

Rising participation and fundraising numbers reveal BMO Ride for Cancer’s exponential growth. The first year, 130 cyclists raised $175,000; last year, 1,300 cyclists raised a record $1.8 million.

“There’s an increasing appetite for people to support this event, in part because of their deeply personal connections to cancer,” says Scully. “But it’s also a really fun day where people get to have a great experience, all while knowing they’re making a tangible impact on local cancer care.”

Scully donates in memory of his two grandmothers who died of cancer, and an aunt who is a recent cancer survivor. Each year, he’s there on BMO Ride day to thank the volunteers — many of whom are BMO employees — and congratulate the riders crossing the finish line.

“There are lots of hugs and tears because every one of us has an emotional connection to cancer,” says Scully. “And any one of us could one day benefit from the life-changing equipment and technology funded.”

This year’s event proceeds are helping to fund a world’s first cancer-fighting technology at the QEII that has the potential to reduce radiation treatments from 25 to five for certain cancers. Scully encourages Atlantic Canadians to rally behind BMO Ride for Cancer — whether they’re planning to ride on October 1 or support the fundraising efforts of their friends, families and colleagues participating in the event.

With a track record of hosting two in-person cycling events in 2020 and 2021 that followed strict pandemic-safety protocols, past participants know BMO Ride for Cancer is an event they can count on no matter what. Last year, event registration reached capacity within just three weeks of going live. And with the support of visionary partners like BMO, things are gearing up for another recording-breaking event.

Are you ready? Secure your spot, join the movement:


Rider Stories are presented by:

Our Ride Community is comprised of inspiring advocates, warriors, survivors and fighters. This community is the reason we ride, to make an impact on cancer care for them and for future generations. As a proud sponsor of Ride for Cancer, AstraZeneca helps share these stories and inspires our community to continue the fight against cancer.