Bikes for the World

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Featured Volunteer: Ann Jackson

Ann Jackson has been rallying the troops for Bikes for the World for the past decade in Severna Park. Turning the side parking lot at Pedal Pushers bike shop into a temporary-one-day BfW satellite operation, Ann's crew collects bikes and catches users of the nearby B&A trail to tell them about what we do.

Over the years this collection point has collected about 700 bikes to be recycles and reused to change lives around the globe. "You can really make a difference to someone's life. Not only do you provide bicycles for transportation, you teach people how to fix bicycles. A lot of people (here) have bicycles they don't use and this keeps them out of a landfill. I think it's a good thing to do," Ann Jackson.

The official collection 'sponsor' is Ann Jackson AND Friends. And we really can't recognize Ann without mentioning the 'Friends'. Ann pulls together a collection of relatives to help wrench this event. Sister Ellen Berty runs the outreach table and no one walks by without being asked, "do you have a bicycle to donate?" Her husband Pete and brother Tom not only prep the bikes but they also mentor young volunteers Ann recruits from area schools and clubs. This collection is a popular service project that brings together students, family, friends, and area businesses.

The biggest supporter is the host shop, Pedal Pushers. Owner Rod Reddish has been partnered up with BfW and collects bikes all year, some help jump start Ann's collection. When asked if the collection boosts sales, Reddish replied, "It's not about making money, it's about getting people a ride."

Neighboring coffee shop, The Big Bean, also steps up to help support this effort. "Deb Hoffman is a wonderful supporter by providing free coffee coupons and helping with advertising. Her coffee shop is a real community center," reports Ann Jackson.

Bottom line, we are recognizing Ann for pulling this event together, but it's really the community that makes it roll. From the store fronts promoting the event to the family members mentoring young volunteers this collection defines to a T exactly what BfW sets out to do. In an effort to keep unused bikes out of our waste stream and divert them into hands that can transform them into affordable needed transportation, BfW brings together the community in a single collective effort to affect lives around the world.

And it's managers like Ann that make this a success. "You are all warm and supportive and the whole operation runs very smoothly from start to finish," says Ann. Hosting a bike collection is something YOU can do and BfW can help.

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