Volunteer delivers meals to seniors by bike -- despite visual impairment
Published Friday, May 19, 2017 10:00PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, May 20, 2017 6:02PM EDT
A Quebec man isn’t letting his visual impairment stop him from delivering meals to low-income seniors, thanks to a bicycle built for two.
Andre Beaudoin, 66, supplies pedal power while his fellow Meals-on-Wheels volunteer Anick Bergeron steers their tandem delivery bike around Montreal.
“I really enjoy it. I feel the wind, the speed of the bike and all that,” Beaudoin told CTV News.
Anick said the pair almost fell off the bike the first time they tried it, but they no longer have any trouble maintaining balance.
Beaudoin says some of the seniors he serves seem surprised when they first realize he can’t see. “So what?” he says. “We can do this.”
The retired computer programmer says the volunteer work is his way of giving back after he received help while growing up.
Beaudoin recalls volunteers reading books to him at school, allowing him to learn before technology made things easier for the visually impaired.
“I decided, well, someday I’ll help other people, too,” he says.
Meals-on-Wheels client Barbara Jarnes was among those surprised when they first met Beaudoin. “I thought, my God, how brave -- how amazing! – that these guys come on bicycles to deliver these meals,” she says.
Beaudoin says he enjoys the work, from the exercise he gets to the interesting conversations he has with elderly people each week.
He says he doesn’t intend on giving up anytime soon. “As long as I can do it, I’ll do it,” he says.
With a report from CTV’s Vanessa Lee in Montreal