Fred Enns Rides to Raise Money for Ukrainian Newcomers

Fred Enns knows what it’s like to start a new life in a new country.  As one of nine children born to immigrant parents, Fred attended small, rural schools before finishing high school and went on to be a teacher with a distinguished 35-year career.

One of his passions is cycling, and he has put that time on his bike to good use, cycling 3,000km across southern Manitoba to raise funds for humanitarian aid for Ukrainian newcomers.

“Bicycle touring has taken me across thousands of miles in Canada, the U.S. and around the world. I consider myself fortunate and am thankful to the many people who have enriched my life. I am happy to make this ride in support of Ukrainian newcomers who have left their homes because of the war in Ukraine and who have decided to seek refuge in Manitoba,” said Enns.

His ride was entirely self-supported, with all the funds going directly to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress – Manitoba Provincial Council.  Enns averaged about 100km each day from July 18 to August 16.

“I just saw myself as being another part of caring people doing something to help people in need,” said Enns.

He said cycling is therapeutic, and he likes the unpredictability of it.

“You have a lot of time to sort through issues, solve all the world problems,” Enns stated, whose parents came to Canada from Ukraine.

“Our lives are pretty structured and we can probably tell you what we’ll be doing next week at this time. Touring is quite a different piece of cake.”

Enns said he thought he’d combine his love of cycling with another cause that’s important — helping displaced Ukrainians in Manitoba.

“It just disturbed me that 100 years after World War I, and we’re still doing the same horrible things to individuals,” Enns said. “There just doesn’t seem to be any end to it.”

The funds will go to the Ukrainian Canadian Congress — Manitoba Provincial Council, adding to the about $250,000 that the organization has already shared with newcomers, said Joanne Lewendosky, Council President.

“This is phenomenal, for a man at his age,” Lewendosky said. “He was determined, and we’re delighted to have him here today.”