Letters to the Editor

Affordable housing challenge needs your support | Letters | June 24

Since I work with Housing Resources Board (HRB), I was very interested in Connie Mears’ opinion piece (“Island supports the arts, but what about the artists?” June 10) that essentially addressed the need for housing on the island.

It’s a great question, and one that could be asked of other groups:

• Island supports the schools, but what about the teachers?

• Island supports farms, but what about the farmers?

• Island supports small business, but what about the workers?

So, what’s the answer? It’s simple. We need more diverse housing. It’s a big challenge, but we don’t have to fix it all at one time. The important thing is to just begin. Someone who is doing that is Steve Rhoades.

Many people on Bainbridge know Steve. As a coach with Rhoades Cycling and Surfing, he has inspired others to go farther, to be better and to give back. And he is someone who would not be living on the island if it weren’t for HRB’s HomeShare program.

In the “By Sea By Land Challenge” on July 5, Steve will be doing something extraordinary to bring attention to the need for affordable housing. He will circumnavigate the island on his paddle board (28 miles), followed by bicycling the Chilly Hilly course (33 miles with 2,675 feet of overall climbing).

All in one day, all for one cause; and you can be part of it. Steve is doing the hard work, but we can help him: be aware of the need; pass it on so others know and make a donation.

Steve is our hero, and so are you. It will be on Steve’s shoulders to go the distance, and it’s your support that will carry him through. Your mission – if you choose to accept it – is to go to our blog at www.ahousinghero.org and make a donation to support Steve by supporting HRB. Then make sure to tell others.

Let your friends know that by donating to HRB for this challenge they will be entered to win exciting prizes like a helicopter ride with HeliTours, cool professional bike fittings by B.I. Cycle, membership at Island Fitness, a North Face Jacket from Wildernest or a $200 Harley-Davidson gift certificate.

So, just begin. Be a hero. Go farther, be better and give back.

Wendy Johnson

Housing Resources Board

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