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Veterans ride to support fellow vets through Boise Rescue Mission programs

Posted: 6:01 PM, Jul 09, 2016
Updated: 2016-07-10 00:09:19Z

About 20 percent of the guest population at Boise Rescue Mission facilities are veterans.

On Saturday, the rescue mission's vet programs received a boost.

The Boise Rescue Mission Ministries does not receive funding from the government, instead relying on the community for backing and financial support.

So, it was a welcome call when members of the American Legion Post 113 in Meridian reached out saying they wanted to support them and their veterans programs in particular.

"They do a great job helping these veterans get back on their feet, mentor them," says Todd Larkin, American Legion Riders 113 director.

"We really, truly live in the most generous community on the face of this earth because there are people here who care and they want to invest in programs and services like Boise Rescue Mission's that really work to help people by giving them a hand up, not just a hand out," says Jason Billester with the Boise Rescue Mission.

Motorcycle riders from across the valley were invited to take part in Saturday's charity fun ride for the Boise Rescue Mission.

Kickstands went up at the American Legion Post 113's headquarters where they embarked on a 95-mile ride.

Ending where they started, lunch was served with a raffle and silent auction.

The Boise Rescue Mission not only provides temporary housing, but connects veterans to the services they're in need of.

"They're going to come to Boise Rescue Mission maybe because they're chronically homeless (homeless for one year or longer), some are just looking for employment or mental health care," Billester says.

The money raised here may also go toward providing a vet with new teeth or help them get past addiction by enrolling them in a substance abuse recovery program.

The goal is to get them off the streets and into their own place to call home. It was all about veterans helping veterans.

"It's fun, the fellowship with people talking with people from different organizations and different groups that come to these events.. getting with them and hopefully working with them in the future too to do more types of charity rides for different organizations," Larkin says.

Since 2012, 650 veterans have benefited from the Boise Rescue Mission's facilities and programs.

For more information, visit https://boiserm.org/services/veterans/ .