This summer, Menlo Park resident Eric Wright is joining Bike & Build, a national nonprofit committed to raising money and awareness for affordable housing, to ride his bicycle across the country with a team of 30 other young adults from Connecticut to California.
The journey will begin on May 30, when Eric will report to New Haven, CT. Over the next 11 weeks, the CT2CA team will pedal an average of 73 miles per day to Half Moon Bay, CA, arriving on August 12. Along the way, the riders will participate in volunteer build days with 10 different affordable housing organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Rebuilding Together, and small local housing nonprofits to help build affordable homes for families in need.
“I am excited about the opportunity to complete an adventure like riding across the country, l while supporting an important and often over-looked cause,” said Eric, who graduated from Menlo-Atherton High School in 2010. “Last summer, I biked almost 800 miles around Iceland, which introduced me to the joys of traveling from the seat of a bike.”
Eric must fundraise at least $4,500 to support the trip. Much of that money is then donated to affordable housing organizations. The 2015 CT2CA team donated $64,800; Bike & Build is confident the 2016 team can repeat or exceed that total. To support Eric, visit his fundraising page.
The CT2CA route is one of eight cross-country trips Bike & Build offers each summer. In total, roughly 300 18-to-29 year old riders will see and experience first-hand the need for affordable housing in this country. In addition to volunteering with construction efforts at affordable housing sites, riders also meet with local officials and community members to discuss affordable housing issues.
Riders will sleep in local churches, community centers, and schools, and will rely on the generosity of hundreds of community members for food, showers, and other necessities. Many former Bike & Builders have gone on to continue their commitment to service through their career choices or further volunteering.