Curtis’ Story: From Vision To RealityGod, Stories
Contributed by: UrbanPromise Toronto
Are you Crazy? That was the initial response when Curtis shared his vision to ride a bicycle across Canada and use it as a platform to share his personal story of hope. It was the most unimaginable time for us to consider supporting such an idea and yet, how could we not support one who grew up in our Leadership Pathway with a desire to be a voice for people growing up in government housing.
Curtis Carmichael, who grew up in Toronto Community Housing, was involved in our Children’s program. At the age of 14 he decided to follow Jesus. That decision changed the trajectory he was on to a path with purpose and meaning. He went from disruptive student to high school valedictorian. At Queen’s University, he was presented the Russ Jackson award, exemplifying academic achievement, football skill, and citizenship which set Curtis up to pursue a career in the Canadian Football League. Curtis realized that this was a distraction in his relationship with God, so he decided to go back to school to become a teacher with a desire to serve marginalized people.
Curtis tackled the most difficult physical and mental challenge of his life this past summer – his Ride for Promise. On July 10 he began cycling from Vancouver to Halifax – 3,300 km in 30 legs over 5 weeks. Along the way, he talked with hundreds of Canadians about the reality of growing up in an environment filled with violence, drug abuse and crime, expressing the importance of long-term relational investment in the lives of children and youth.
Over 100 people helped provide everything needed for this adventure: a vehicle and trailer, fuel and insurance, bike equipment, food and lodging for over 30 locations across Canada. Many people have responded to support UrbanPromise Toronto with financial donations. We are grateful for all who were involved in the Ride for Promise and how God worked through this vision bringing it to reality, impacting people from many walks of life along the way. Thank you God for your faithfulness.