Hi - I'm Doug and I am on a 3,400 mile mission! Click here to view my daily journal:https://www.gsil.org/dougs-daily-journal/Click here to view my coverage in the news:The Challenge
I am riding across America to help support programs for at-risk youth as they transition into adulthood. I am not a professional cyclist. I actually work as an Employment Coordinator at a nonprofit helping students with disabilities achieve success.
This cross country bike ride is unsupported, meaning that I am doing this solo! Riding through the cold rains, sweating in the desert sun, camping at night and carrying everything that I will need for 2 months on my person.
When I tell people about my trip, the first thing they ask is, "Why?"The Mission
My short answer is, "Because kids like Shawn need your help."
Shawn is an 18 year-old African American with a visual impairment resulting from albinism. Growing up, he had a hard time fitting in and so he grew up angry. He got in fights. He dropped out of school. He landed himself in placement. Then he learned about GSIL.
That's when Shawn changed gears. He is now a graduate of the Granite State Independent Living (GSIL)
Earn & Learn Opportunities program, an alternative learning program where students learn real-world skills (i.e. interviewing, interning, personal finances) while earning academic credits outside of the classroom. The non-traditional environment better suited his learning style, personal and professional needs. It allowed Shawn the opportunity for success. Today, he's working towards earning his GED with a dream of entering the medical field. He learned that sometimes by changing gears, you can navigate the rough paths and climb the upward hills that you never believed you could.
I'm passionate about what I do. "At-risk youth" are adolescents who are less likely to become self-sufficient adults. Many times it's a result of growing up in extreme poverty, having an unstable or dysfunctional home, experiencing racial discrimination, or living with a disability. I am determined to spread the word from California to New Hampshire about how important it is to provide assistance to these adolescents as they transition from high school into adulthood.
This is the time in a student's life that can determine whether they land a job after high school or whether they land themselves in prison. It's the journey you take that defines the destination.Getting Involved
By supporting my charity bike ride, you are generously supporting independence for at-risk youth, like Shawn. *All proceeds go directly towards the mission and programs of Granite State Independent Living. Please consider making a donation today and helping me reach the East Coast!Every gift, no matter how big or small, makes a difference
(*all donations are tax deductible). Then share this page with your friends, family and colleagues.
Stay tuned on Facebook
for tour updates, donor highlights and to track my progress!Thank you for supporting my cause and theirs,