Bruce Johnson was all smiles as he motorcycled into Ucluelet on Friday.
The Wasaga Beach local spent August motorcycling across Canada raising funds and awareness for the Children’s Miracle Network.
He began his journey on Aug. 1 at St. Johns’ Janeway Children’s Hospital and visited all 14 Children’s Miracle Network hospitals in Canada throughout the month.
“No one’s ever visited them all and drawn attention to that before so we really wanted to celebrate the fact that we have these incredible hospitals in Canada and we wanted to raise some money,” he told the Westerly News.
This was the second large-scale trip Johnson has initiated and he said a five-month trek from Ontario to Costa Rica in 2013 raised over $100,000 for the Children’s Miracle Network. He expected his most recent trip would top that total.
“It’s going phenomenally well,” he said. “The journey’s been great. People have been very, very, giving.”
Johnson is a RE/MAX agent and stopped at RE/MAX offices along the way collecting donations and visiting colleagues who blanketed him with support, including places to stay.
“I’m stopping at RE/MAX offices because the Children’s Miracle Network is one of the biggest things that we support,” he said adding $152 million has been raised by RE/MAX agents across North America—$62 million in Canada—over the past 30 years.
“This office in particular; I had to come here because [local agent] Judy Gray is actually a Children’s Miracle Network ambassador, which is a really rare thing,” he said. “Judy does so much for the Children’s Miracle Network.”
Johnson paid all his own travel expenses and 100 per cent of the funds raised went to the cause, which he said is vital.
“It’s for families whose children are at their most vulnerable,” he said.
“It’s not a lifestyle choice. These kids didn’t smoke all their lives and get cancer. They’re born with cancer. We need to do more to help these children and these hospitals are always underfunded; that’s what we’re drawing attention to.”
He noted his 31-day journey coincided with RE/MAX’s Month of Miracles and said the “organic, grass roots,” fundraising campaign is fuelled by the generosity of RE/MAX agents.
“You’ve got some wildly generous RE/MAX agents really kicking up their bid,” he said adding every agent who participates in RE/MAX’s Miracle Home Program donates a portion of each commission cheque to the Network.
“It’s been wildly heartwarming to see this all the way across Canada.”
Johnson left Ucluelet on Sunday and was expected to complete his cross-country journey in Victoria on Sept. 6.
Anyone looking for more information about Bruce Johnson’s philanthropic efforts is encouraged to visit www.motorcycleformiracles.com.