To me, riding my bike symbolizes freedom and growth. I must keep my balance and keep moving forward.

To me, riding my bike symbolizes freedom and growth. I must keep my balance and keep moving forward.

Days on the road

countup

Mat's Story

mat-kid

I was born in Duncan on Vancouver Island. I learned to ride without training wheels at 3 and you couldn’t get me off my bike. My Dad, my superhero, talented at cycling and mechanics, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis when I was 6 years old and from that day forward my life changed.

I moved to Terrace BC, when I was 7. I rode bikes trying to make friends. Some of these kids were older and they sexually abused and tortured me. Not long after this my parents divorced and I blamed myself. I began to socially disconnect and in my teenage years I became an outcast. I started partying and hanging around with the wrong crowd. Hard drugs and drinking became my life at age 15. I lost a close friend and unable to process the pain of that loss in a healthy manner I simply did more drugs. I crashed my truck due to mixing drugs and medications, lost my job, overdosed and ended up in the hospital.

Sobriety is Possible

While in the hospital my mom showed me a news clip about the John Volken Academy. All I heard was long term. I was sold because I knew I didn’t know how to live. Once I was through the doors of the John Volken Academy I felt safe. After 3 months I experienced great personal growth. It was a challenge living in a Therapeutic Community, but it was what was needed. I learned about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and finally at the age of 30 I got answers to why I mentally and emotionally suffered. Riding my BMX across Canada is a dream I’ve had from 7 years old.  Now my dream is a reality.  I want everyone to know you can change your life – sobriety is possible!

mat-park

About John Volken Academy

The John Volken Academy addiction recovery program is modeled after the therapeutic community approach to addiction treatment, providing students with healthy lifestyle changes needed to live successful and sober lives, in the long term. The treatment programs are supported by a board of directors and receive consultation from addiction professionals and healthy-living specialists. Combining the therapeutic community approach with professional guidance makes this program extremely effective and truly life-changing.

The John Volken Academy is funded by private charitable donations, friends of the Academy, supporting businesses and government.

Thanks to this funding, the program is free after a one-time intake fee of $5000.

To learn more about The John Volken Academy or Enroll as a student, Please call us at :

1-855-592-3001​

or click the button below.

The Journey

GOAL

I am attempting to set a world record for longest BMX bike ride. If successful, I will be the first person in the world to bike across Canada on a single speed BMX bike.

I will be leaving from Halifax soon as weather permits. Approximately during the first week of May. The finish line will be the Parliament Building in Victoria B.C. 

mat-shop

MOTIVATION

My motivation for the trip comes from a deep desire to give back to the John Volken Academy.  

“I should have been dead a few times. After failing at 7 treatment centres, I found my recovery at the John Volken Academy.”

Now that I have been sober for 3 years, I am excited about life.

Map

I will be in 
Quebec City- May 28
Montreal- June 5
Ottawa- June 12
Toronto- June 24
North Bay- July 6
Sultan- July 11
Terrace Bay- July 22
Thunder Bay- July 30
Vermilion Bay- August 8
Winnipeg- August 15th

*These Dates are estimates based on current weather information. These dates my change based on unforeseen events. Follow us on instagram to stay updated.

CHALLENGES

Information about challenges he and his team will face.

1. Weather details

2. Info details

3. Bike parts

4. Diet and health

5. Mental Health

mat-gym

To learn more about The John Volken Academy or Enroll as a student, Please call us at :

1-855-592-3001​

or click the button below.