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Climate Ride: Saving The Planet On The Bike Trip Of Your Dreams
The League has long believed in bicycling as part of the solution to climate change and the movement toward building a healthier, greener nation (check out a throwback from a ’70s era League magazine below!). We hope you will join us in embracing the ride on World Car Free Day this Thursday, September 22nd, and continue to swap as many car trips for bike trips as possible throughout the end of the year (and log those miles) to help us reach our Drive Less, Bike More (DLBM) goal of turning 2 million miles of would-be car trips into 2 million miles worth of climate-saving action!
Another day of action to take part in? On October 22nd, our friends at Climate Ride, a nonprofit organization that “mobilizes people to protect our planet through life-changing adventures”, will be matching funds you raise for your favorite nonprofits. Registration is free to anyone, anywhere and is open now. Here’s how it works: Teams dream up a fun challenge to do together (bike, run, paddle, dance, write, cook, etc.), fundraise, then receive an on-the-dollar match towards their choice of environmental or active transportation advocacy group—we’d be honored if you chose us!
Learn more about Climate Ride’s Day of Action at www.climateride.org/events/day-of-action/.
Director of Membership and Development Kevin Dekkinga had the pleasure of interviewing Caeli Quinn, the founder of Climate Ride, for the League’s Summer 2022 magazine. Read the article below.
You don’t need to know me for long before you discover my love for bikes and learn about my next big bike adventure and my deep passion for sustainability. As such, it was a pleasure to sit down with Climate Ride founder Caeli Quinn and learn more about how her organization empowers climate advocates while building support for sustainability-centered organizations like the League.
Caeli describes Climate Ride as “a community of adventurers dedicated to protecting the planet. We unite advocacy, action, and philanthropy, inspiring people to work together toward a sustainable future. With the environmental crisis, the hardest part is often figuring out how to get involved. At Climate Ride, we’ve created positive and inclusive events that are good for you and good for the planet. We help you discover and explore what you are capable of and turn that passion into support for environmental and active transportation grantees. Together, we bring people and nonprofits together to inspire action and make protecting the planet a philanthropic priority for everyone.”
The way it works is as simple as it is genius: participants register to attend one of Climate Ride’s professionally-hosted and developed bike tours, featuring some of the most dreamed-about bicycling destinations throughout the world. Riders then commit to raising at least the donation requirement for their adventure and use a peer-to-peer fundraising platform to rally support for the non-profit of their choice among Climate Ride’s partner organizations.
Since 2008, Climate Riders have contributed more than $7 million to over 100 non-profit organizations, the majority fueling local bicycling and environmental advocacy groups. This year, Climate Ride is proud to be featuring a dollar-for-dollar match for all charity partners, aiming to contribute more than $5 million to climate advocacy this year alone.
While the climate crisis presents an existential threat to the entirety of the planet, this area of concern is still largely untouched by philanthropy. In 2019, Americans gave $449 billion to charity—and only 3% of that total went to environmental organizations (including animal welfare organizations).
Climate Ride works to not just to shine a light on climate issues, but to accelerate philanthropy around climate change by empowering local advocacy organizations.
“These days, it’s easy to feel powerless to impact the structural forces at the center of our national conversation on climate change,” says Quinn. “Climate Ride offers participants the opportunity to physically make a change, creating a positive space where they turn their passion and concern into philanthropic fuel for advocacy.” She adds that “99% of Climate Ride riders go on to become local climate advocates, creating change back at home long after the bags are unpacked.”
This year, Climate Ride offers 12 different adventures to choose from, including Green Fondos in California and New York. Green Fondos are larger weekend events that feature several routes around a single location—an excellent opportunity to engage in something positive with friends, colleagues, or even your local bike club.
During the height of the COVID pandemic, when travel was less possible (and international travel was prohibited), Climate Ride continued to benefit climate-centered non-profits by shifting to a decentralized model of bike events, where riders created their own bike adventures all the while fundraising for their favorite charity partners without leaving their hometowns.
This year, Climate Ride is working to expand that reach through their Environmental Justice Action Grants program. Using ranked-choice voting, Climate Ride stakeholders are awarding grants to organizations that are fighting systemic racism, and making progress on environmental and social justice.
Ready for the adventure of a lifetime while fueling (or supercharging) your passion for climate action? Climate Ride registration is now open for several trips, including San Juan Islands & the Olympics, Maine, Death Valley and both Green Fondo events!
Browse the ride calendar and sign up at climateride.org. Don’t forget to name your favorite national bike advocacy organization *ahem* as one of your charity partners.