Team dedicates Ride the Rockies tour to helping homeless during 30-year anniversary
A group of more than 30 volunteer cyclists will receive support and encouragement before their grueling 403-mile Ride the Rockies tour, all dedicated to make a difference in the lives of Colorado’s homeless.
The Denver Press Club, at 1330 Glenarm Place, will host the Team Samaritan House send-off event and fundraiser starting 5:30 p.m. today. The club will donate 70 percent of its tips during the night to benefit Samaritan House shelter in Denver before the team leaves for the Ride the Rockies Colorado Bicycle Tour June 11-17.
“My motivation for this ride is, and will be, knowing the difference we can make in the lives of those less fortunate,” said Tom Schwein, co-captain of the team, who returns after a near-fatal crash during last year’s ride. “Each dollar raised will truly change the lives of the individuals and families who call these shelters home.”
Donations made go to support Samaritan House shelter, which first opened its doors in 1986, and Catholic Charities homeless shelters Father Ed Judy House in Denver, The Mission in Fort Collins and Guadalupe Community Center and Shelter in Greeley.
The team will begin their tour in Carbondale before trekking up to 85 miles per day through Aspen, Vail, Silverthorne, Estes Park and finally Fort Collins—exceeding 29,000 feet in elevation gains.
Fellow rider Leslie Prevish of Boulder said anybody could face homelessness.
“I’m going to ride and pray and spread awareness,” said 47-year-old Prevish. “I think about the challenges of homelessness. And anybody could have a circumstance in their life that causes them to end up homeless. It’s important to help people in need and not judge because you don’t know their story.”
Ride the Rockies kicks off a series of anniversary events to mark the shelter’s 30 Year of Mercy to the poor and to raise awareness of the continuing need in the community. According to the Metro Denver Homeless Initiative, 6,130 men, women and children across the Denver Metro area identified as homeless in January 2015. Nearly one quarter were newly homeless—or experiencing homelessness the first time for less than a year.
The anniversary events continue throughout the year and culminate in a dinner benefit called Sam’s Supper at Mile High Station September 10. Archbishop Samuel Aquila of the Archdiocese of Denver will lead a rededication of Samaritan House shelter December 10. The community is invited to attend the anniversary events. For details, visit samhousedenver.org.
Follow Team Samaritan House on social media at #samhousedenver and learn more at samhousedenver.org/team-samaritan.
Cheryl Talley, Director, Communications and Marketing
Catholic Charities of Denver