Executives from a homeless nonprofit biked 500 miles to the state Capitol to meet with legislators

Executives from Hope the Mission went on a nine-day 500-mile bike ride to talk with state legislators about the homeless crisis.

Amanda Palacios Image
Saturday, September 9, 2023
Executives from a homeless nonprofit biked 500 miles to Sacramento
Executives from Hope the Mission cycled from the nonprofits headquarters in the San Fernando Valley to the state Capitol to advocate for affordable housing and raise funds for the organization.

NORTH HILLS, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Ken Craft and Rowan Vansleve are pedaling for a purpose, to advocate for affordable housing and to raise funds for the homeless nonprofit, Hope the Mission.

Craft and Vansleve embarked on a 500-mile bike ride to Sacramento on Aug. 29 and arrived at the state Capitol this past Wednesday.

"One of the things we've done a number of times whether it's these long-distance runs or the activations where we experienced the conditions of being unhoused on the street, is put a spotlight on this issue," said Hope the Mission President Rowan Vansleve. "And this time, we wanted to put a spotlight on this issue and travel to Sacramento and speak to the legislators who are making decisions around certain bits of policy."

The two executives say they biked 60 to 90 miles a day, facing rough terrain, high winds and intense heat.

"By the end of that second day, I didn't think I was going to make it. I was just worn out," said Ken Craft, founder and CEO of Hope the Mission.

On the ninth day of their ride, they finally arrived in Sacramento.

At the Capitol, Craft and Vansleve said they met with state legislators and advocated for policies, like Senate Bill 4.

"Senate Bill 4 is an incredible piece of legislation. It would allow building by right, permanent supportive housing and shelters on property that is owned by faith-based groups and areas of higher learning. This means another 140,000 acres of land would be opened up to end this housing crisis," Vansleve said.

"This is one simple way that policy can be adjusted and modified so that we can bring people indoors," Craft said.

So far, Hope the Mission has raised over $100,000. However, they still need more donations to support their efforts in building affordable housing.

"If you can, go to our website at hopethemission.com, you'll see it right there, it's called Cycle to the Capitol, a Housing Revolution. Click on that and you'll be able to make a donation."

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