Foti High Five: Houston man's cross country journey aims to raise millions for area non-profit

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- In this week's Foti High Five, a Houston man on a cross country bike ride is hoping to raise millions to save a facility that helps and houses adults with disabilities.

David Baldwin is headed through 11 states on a 3,500-mile journey. He's starting at the Pacific Ocean. He's now in Ontario, Oregon, and headed across country to the Atlantic Ocean.

Baldwin says it's the most important bike ride of his life. He explained, "We are trying to raise $13.5 million for The Center in Houston."

The Center is Houston's largest non-profit organization that helps adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Baldwin has been a long-time supporter, even though he has no children.

He said, "In many cases we are the legal guardians of our clients, so that means families have entrusted us with the long-term viability to support their family members."

In the past years, Baldwin says the center's financial situation has deteriorated, threatening hundreds of disabled adults, many of whom live at The Center.

Late last year, it hit him: he had to do something -- something big -- to save The Center.

Baldwin said, "This was just something that we felt blessed and called to do."

Baldwin calls it the Pursuit Ride -- part fundraiser, part awareness campaign.

Even though the ride just started, Baldwin and his wife have already helped raise $11 million since January.

Baldwin said, "It's not easy, and particularly when you hit the mountains and the headwinds."

Yet with every pedal stroke and stride, Baldwin says he's reminded of those residents of The Center. It keeps him going.

He told us about the lesson he's learned along the way: He said, "Don't wait to do tomorrow what God has giving you the opportunity to do today."

And for that, we give Baldwin a high five -- all the way from Houston -- to keep Baldwin going strong.
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