The first annual Million Dollar Bike Ride took place on May 3rd, 2014, and from what I witnessed, it was a true success. With over $1.4 million raised in order to fund rare disease research, I was proud to be there and participate. Being there with my good friend and fellow advocate Scott, representing the Family Heart Foundation, it was an experience to say the least. FH is a genetic disease that effects so many, and on that day not only did we come together, but so many others came together to fight back against genetic diseases.
From the 8 year old to the 80 year old, you could feel it, the humanity, the love, the companionship; here was an event dedicated to further help find the answers to the oh so many questions that are still in limbo.
Riding 11 miles was not something easy, but it was a small, and I mean small, task in comparison to what these individuals with rare diseases go through each and every day. I think to myself, if 500 participants could raise over $1 million, how much could be raised with 1000, 1500, or even 2000 participants?
There is so much that we can all be doing, and the Million Dollar Bike Ride is just one example of how we, as humans, and as individuals who have dealt with rare diseases ourselves, can give back to those who need it more than us.
-Samir, FH Patient Advocate