What would you say if we told you that there is a Philly-based charity that raises money for affordable housing causes by biking across the United States? You would probably say the same thing we did, “that is the coolest thing ever!” Well, this is no pipe dream folks, Philly’s own, Bike and Build is doing just that!
Bike and Build is a locally based organization with a national scope and some hard-hitting, fundraising power. The staff at Bike and Build hosts multiple cross country bike rides each year with dozens of sponsored riders. They raise money, participate in charitable events and advocate for affordable housing all along the way.
Bike and Build was founded in 2002 by Marc Bush with a unique, multidimensional mission in mind. He wanted to get young adults involved in social issues, advocate for affordable housing organizations and promote community awareness on housing related issues. The organization began by hosting two, yearly rides and grew steadily. Today they host 8 cross country bike rides each summer. Cyclists are led by a team leader and they stop throughout the route in order to participate in “build days” in which they work alongside members of Habitat for Humanity, Rebuilding Together and other nonprofit organizations. Riders also advocate for the affordable housing causes to multiple community organizations throughout their journey.
Bike and Build is fueled by passion. Riders are attracted to the cause by a strong desire to have a positive impact while having a life-changing adventure. The Bike and Build Staff and their extensive list of riders have formed a close knit family and feel that they are really part of something special. The staff prides themselves on providing lifelong memories and unforgettable experiences for their riders while contributing money and manpower to crucial causes. They consider every ride a success, especially those that cause riders to face challenges and overcome adversity.
We were extremely impressed by the structure and impact of this organization. Every level of their infrastructure has a positive influence and they contribute close to $600,000 and 20,000 volunteer build hours to housing causes annually. We have to say that Marc Bush and his staff have achieved their mission!
Bike and Build is made up of an inspiring group of young adults that clearly demonstrate the loving and giving spirit of Philadelphia. If you are ever looking to influence change or have a strong desire to travel cross-country by bicycle, Bike and Build is the place to start. This organization has a huge reach and an incredibly unique design. The staff and volunteers are truly miraculous, proving once again, just how much Philly Cares!