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Life and car update - may need to change username :-)

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Just thought I'd throw this out there. After 17 years as a pastor - hence the username "The Rev" - I stepped down to do OnRamp full-time. It's the Brazos-Valley charity my wife and I built to give cars to families in need sent to us by other charities, churches, healthcare and education providers. When we started it 3 ½ years ago, we figured we'd be able to to a few a year. We gave client #70 her car last week and are doing almost 1 a week. We're also in the process of expanding outside BCS - hopefully DFW later this summer. So it wasn't something that could remain an evening and weekend gig. So here we are. No longer "the Rev." Just "Blake” now I guess 🙂

Benefit is more weekend time with my 11-yr-old twins enjoying car stuff like this shop-show down in Houston today. We still have fun on country roads in our '85 911 and '05 330i. Miss TWS, but happy for a shared hobby with my kids. 




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49 minutes ago, robertcope said:

That is amazing! How can we help support OnRamp?

That's very kind of you to ask @robertcope! There's a few ideas that come to mind for anyone who wants to help us.

1. Follow what we're doing at www.onramptx.org and @OnRampTX on FB and IG and share the stories with others so that more people know about OnRamp, especially those connected to charities that could sponsor great clients to us (we don't take any clients directly - all come through qualifying sponsorship). While we're just in the Brazos Valley right now, we hope to get to all major cities in Texas in the coming years and it helps a lot if people just know a bit about what we do.

2. As fellow car enthusiasts, let me know if you come across the vehicles we try to buy. We are ALWAYS looking and ready to jump on good values. We want very reliable, clean title vehicles in the $5k to $8k price range. Favorites include the usual suspects: Honda Accord, Civic, CRV, Pilot, Odyssey; Toyota Corolla, Camry (our most frequent donated car), Avalon, Rav4, Highlander; Mazda 3; Chevy/GMC Tahoe, Suburban. We have occasional needs for work trucks and ADA accessible vehicles. We've got a team that can go buy in Houston and Austin. We love single-owner Texas vehicles with good maintenance records. Happy with up to about 130k miles. We would always love if the seller is willing to donate the vehicle to us (which is tax deductible) or sell it at a reduced price, but we'll pay FMV if it's a car that can serve one of our client families realistically for the next 5 years. That's our goal in every case.

3. If anyone wants to give, we can certainly use the funds. We budget $10k per client family to cover purchase, tax and title (not even 503c's get out of paying taxes on car purchases in TX), and all of the first-year maintenance and repair (that's part of the package - if we accept a client, we cover all first year vehicle upkeep so so they can focus on building their savings account, which is a key metric of long-term family prosperity). We aim to raise $350k annually to cover all we're doing. You can give by card, bank transfer, check, or PayPal at www.onramptx.org/give

Thanks for asking, man! The more people we can get interested in this work, the better.

"Automobile ownership has a greater impact on a person’s chances of being employed than having a high school diploma and is the greatest indicator of the quality and likelihood of a person’s employment" (Lichtenwalter, Koeske, & Sales, 2006; Fletcher et al., 2010)

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