Just raising awareness, because I really don’t want anything to do with raising money. I’ve been writing a book, and a few chapters are sampled over at Inkshares. With enough pre-sale interest, they arrange publishing it. I’ll have the link there soon.
Or I come up with ideas like this: Recently I stopped at a shade tent offering bbq and local food. Famished from a long ride, I asked for a couple vegetarian sides, then propped myself leaning against my own bike as I ate from the styrofoam tray. A young boy happily came up to the front wheel and asked “what’s this,” feeling the tread with his hand. His chipper voice and positive demeanor reminded me of my grandson. “What’s this?” again, as he felt the brakes. I awkwardly tried to guide his hand to the shifters before I realized he was completely blind. He went around the back of the bike with his miniature red-tipped cane and asked about the pedals as I guided his hand to turning one. “Oh! it makes noise!” so I explained the chain and what makes it move. He was such a happy kid, as his parents kept a close watch on his curious wandering. Later on my ride home, I was wondering how to get him into this program, that teaches totally blind kids how to develop echolocation, like dolphins, so they can actually ride a bike like Daniel Kish. How could his young parents even think of affording such a thing? There should be an Isaiah’s Bike Fund…
Isaiah and his friends would need a safe place to learn and ride, like this velodrome here. I started this project from just an idea, enlisted my best friend Jackie to help, and devoted myself for several years to the effort. The rest of the team on the board worked hard make it happen and just didn’t quit even when the dream seemed impossible, so now it exists. Some of the young cyclists are already on the national podium, can’t wait to see a kid from Cleveland make it to the Olympics.
Project Hero does it right.
Over 90% of funds go straight to the veterans with awesome cycling programs and customized equipment for amputees and veterans with PTSD. I know how crucial cycling has been in my own struggle recovering from PTSD and TBI. R2R helped me tremendously just by participating on a ride from San Francisco to LA, when I was inspired by and connected with other veterans. The other more publicized warrior organization can only imitate these guys.