By Sterling McGinn
Tim Ward is a passionate cyclist who is raising awareness for an organization many people may not know about.
Ward is a Lansing resident who is president of Michigan Legislative Consultants, the oldest lobbying firm in the state.
He has embarked on a 22-day journey on his bike called Trace Michigan to raise awareness for Chance for Life. Chance for Life is a progressive transformational program offering behavior and life skills training to incarcerated individuals about to return to society.
The cyclist made a stop at Deer Park at Muskallonge Lake State Park after riding his bike along County Road 407 on Saturday, July 15.
“Even though they have been around for 25 years, not a lot of people know about them,” he said during his stop at Deer Park. “This is both a fundraiser and a trip to raise awareness about who Chance for Life is and their successes.”
Ward has been riding his bike around the entire Lower and Upper Peninsulas beginning in Detroit on July 10. Throughout his trip, he will be making stops to share messages about the program he is supporting.
The organization also specializes in job training, job placement, and retention and substance use disorders.
Core members of Chance for Life have a recidivism rate of just six percent.
“It transforms how the individuals approach their lives and approach decision making,” said Ward.
The trip combines his passion for cycling and his support for Chance for Life.
The Trace Michigan journey travels the perimeters of Michigan’s two peninsulas.
After his stay in Deer Park, Ward set out to Marquette. His trip will conclude in Detroit on August 3 after completing the loop.
Ward has thoroughly enjoyed his ride so far.
“I have seen a lot of the state over the years, but even the parts I have seen, you see differently on a bike,” he stated. “It has been wonderful and a great experience.”
A support motorhome has been following Ward, giving him a place to sleep and carrying other necessities for the trip.