Padre Bikes for Wheels: Fr. Ivan Nahachewsky to bike 2,000 km through Northern Saskatchewan to send wheelchairs to Ukraine

Yuri Bilinsky, New Pathway – Ukrainian News.

To collect the intended $250,000 to buy about 1,000 wheelchairs for those in need in Ukraine, a priest from Saskatchewan is sacrificing his summer vacation for a 2,000-km bike ride through the province’s wildest terrain.

Fr. Ivan Nahachewsky, a 58-years-old Ukrainian Catholic priest, 4th Degree Knight of Columbus and Military Chaplain, has been training since October 2020 for an “adventure“ that would stretch even a much younger athlete’s resources.

Fr. Nahachewsky decided to have the ride while on his recent deployment as a Military Chaplain in Ukraine when he was working with the Dzherelo Wheelchair Repair Workshop in Lviv. The dire needs of disabled people in Ukraine moved him and he approached the Knights of Columbus Saskatchewan chapter which has already helped send wheelchairs to children and adults in 13 countries.

Fr. Nahachewsky had this to say to all potential donors: “I invite you to join me on an adventure. You can help make people’s lives better. Pray for and donate toward this fundraising project. If nothing else, be thankful to God and celebrate your mobility.”
The ride will cover a good part of Saskatchewan and start at Cluff Lake (A on the map), proceed south to Beauval (B), from there to Key Lake (C) and back to La Ronge (D), concluding at Stoney Rapids (E). About 4/5 of the route will be on gravel. Fr. Nahachewsky’s daughter will be his pilot through the ride.

On the eve of the ride, Fr. Nahachewsky’s mother, Stephania, passed away. The personal loss did not deter him. He wrote on the ride’s Facebook page: “While biking, I will be dreaming and praying for my Mother. […] My start date [initially supposed to be June 28 – NP-UN] will be postponed by one day or maybe two, but the Padre Bike Ride is a go“.
Proceeds from Padre Bikes for Wheels are marked for Canadian Wheelchair Foundation, and for the Dzherelo Wheelchair Repair Workshop in Lviv.

The Dzherelo Rehabilitation Centre was founded in Lviv in 1993. Over the 26 years of the centre’s activity, more than 7,000 children and young people aged from a few weeks to 45 years have received training and rehabilitation assistance. The centre provides comprehensive physical, psychological and medical and social rehabilitation for children and young people with cerebral palsy (CP), Down syndrome, autism spectrum disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and other developmental disorders. Today there are about 250 children on the programs of the Dzherelo centre.

All donations will be made to the Saskatchewan Knights of Columbus Charitable Foundation. Funds will be allocated as follows:

70% to the Canadian Wheelchair Foundation for wheelchairs to be shipped to Ukraine
20% for funding to be sent to the Dzherelo Wheelchair Repair Workshop in Lviv Ukraine
10% Saskatchewan Knights of Columbus Charitable Foundation – administration

Even before the ride started, as of June 28, the cause collected $10,005.
For more information and to make a donation, visit https://padrebikes.ca/. It is also possible to donate by cheque. Donors will be recognized by name. Please indicate if you wish to remain anonymous. Cheques can be made to Saskatchewan Knights of Columbus Charitable Foundation, Memo: Padre Bikes, and mailed to P.O. Box 61, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, S6H 4N7.