Walk ‘n Rollers Launches Fundraising Campaign for Repair Hub

Walk ‘n Rollers, a local non-profit focused on Safe Routes to School and Active Transportation programming, has launched a campaign to raise funds for a bike repair hub. The bike hub will serve as a home base for Walk ‘n Rollers’ Bike Distribution program which collects, refurbishes and distributes used bikes to kids in need, all at no cost to the recipients.

The program was initially launched during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. After replacing some bikes in the organization’s fleet in April 2020, Walk ‘n Rollers put out a call for their extra bikes. About a dozen bikes were claimed within 48 hours. “It was immediately obvious there was a great need to be filled,” says Jim Shanman, Walk ‘n Rollers founder and executive director.

“Families were trying to adjust to the Safer-at-Home orders. Getting outdoors and exercising by foot and by bike suddenly became a priority,” says Shanman. “What started as a kind gesture to a few, became a needed program for many.”

The organization put the word out for additional bikes and assistance. Bikes flowed in and Shanman and a few other bike technicians got to work. Over 100 requests came in and more than 80 were filled. The program has proven so successful, Walk ‘n Rollers is looking to make it a permanent part of their programming.

The GoFundMe campaign seeks to raise $10,000 for a freight container, tools, parts and supplies. And it couldn’t happen at better time. Since rebooting the program March 1, 2021, they already have over 40 requests for bikes.

Ultimately, the program will train students in vocational skills such as bike repair, bike safety instruction, business management and community engagement.

“But first things first,” says Shanman. “We need to get the first hub off the ground to attract serious funders. Then we can build hubs throughout the county.”

Walk ‘n Rollers works throughout Southern California on Safe Routes to School programs of all sizes. Currently in its eleventh year, they work with kids, schools and safe routes programs in Los Angeles, Orange and Riverside counties.

For more information go to www.walkmorebikemore.org

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