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Originally published: 2014-03-20 18:56:49
Last modified: 2014-03-20 18:57:34

Blood Sweat and Gears issues challenge

by Community Report

Blood Sweat and Gears will be matching donations up to $2,500 to the WeCAN program dollar-for-dollar from now until April 15.

The funding received through the partnership will help provide heating fuel and utilities relief to those in need during the ongoing winter season.

"It's been a cold winter and there are citizens in our community who are struggling to keep heat on in their homes. WeCAN is an organization which  qualifies the need and then provides the assistance to keep them warm and at home. We admire their work and are pleased and humbled to assist in their efforts," said Scott Nelson, president of BSG Events Inc.

WeCAN, Watauga Crisis Assistance Network, is a 100 percent cash-in, cash-out crisis assistance program striving to keep people in their homes by helping to offset increased heating fuel costs and utility bills.

Since 2002, the program has been providing aid to community members facing eviction, utility cutoff and heating fuel shortages. 

The challenges Watauga faces as a community can be daunting.

The county poverty rate sits at 29 percent, third highest in North Carolina, and the median income is nearly $20,000 below the cost of living, making it all the more difficult for people to stay warm during a cold, extended winter season, according to WeCAN officials.

"What a generous and exciting opportunity," WeCAN coordinator Graham Doege said.

"I can't thank Scott enough for offering up this challenge. We really need this push to help our impoverished county residents get through this extraordinarily long, cold winter safely," he said.

Blood Sweat and Gears is a 100-mile bike ride that highlights the mountain communities of Watauga County.

BSG Events Inc. is a 100 percent volunteer based, fundraising nonprofit. The proceeds from the BSG ride are donated to local charities in the High Country.

The 16th annual Blood Sweat and Gears will take place on June 28.
Blood Sweat & Gears needs your support to make this challenge successful, according to Nelson.

Contributions may be made online at http://www.HospHouse.org.

Donations by check, made out to WeCAN with "BSG Challenge in the memo line, can be mailed to PO Box 309, Boone NC 28607.

For further information about WeCAN, contact Graham Doege at (828) 264-1237, ext. 110, or (wecan@hosphouse.org)

For further information or to register for Blood, Sweat and Gears, visit http://www.bloodsweatandgears.org.