Cyclists (from left) Benjamin Wallace, Mitchell Treece, Jon Forsythe, Ben Cole and Tim Schwan grin through a group shot in Alabama.

College students spread awareness and God's love

Kayla Deneau, Staff Writer

Five bikes, 45 days and one country are the main ingredients needed for five Moody Bible Institute students—the Freedom Riders—to raise awareness and funds to combat human trafficking.

Allegan’s Benjamin Wal­lace is one of the riders who began their journey in Savannah, Ga., and will end it in San Francisco, Calif.

The 2013 Allegan High School graduate said the group initially planned to do the ride for fun but then realized they could do it for something bigger than themselves.

“Christine Caine of the A21 Campaign did a conference last fall and we were all impacted by it,” Wallace said.

The group has since partnered with the campaign and hopes to raise $29,800 to represent the estimated 29.8 million people who are currently enslaved worldwide.

Currently, between $15,000 and $20,000 has been raised for both the trip and the campaign between individual donations and sponsorships.

Wallace said there is a second purpose of the cross-country ride.

“We want to raise funds first and foremost, but we also want to spread the love of Jesus Christ to those we meet,” he said. “We interact with different people on a day-to-day basis.”

As of Monday, June 30, the group was in Green River, Utah, camping on the lawn of Green River Bible Church.

The group is posting to a blog during their trip.

To follow their progress or to donate, visit

For full story, pick up a copy of the July 3 issue of The Allegan County News or subscribe to the e-edition.

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