Bikes for the World

Monday, April 11, 2016

2,245 Bikes Donated

Those dedicated Rotarians are at it again! Last year under the direction of Richard Foot the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek collected 279 bikes during their annual April bike collection event in Frederick.

On April 12, 2015 Dick Foot declared, this year we intend to collect one bike a day until the next collection And that's just what they set out to do.

By March they already had nearly 300 bikes, many of which Bikes for the World had picked up early to ship out to our partners in need of bikes. At that time, we upped the challenge for the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek to collect enough bikes to fill a shipping container.

And on April 9, 2016, the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek took in their final bike of the 2016 collection challenge event. Shattering all previous collection years, the Rotarians collected, prepped, and loaded 539 bikes this year. And yes, that WILL fill a container.

This also brings their eleven year total to 2,245 bikes collected and donated to Bikes for the World.

Richard Foot devised this motivational challenge of a "bike-a-day" to not only collect more bikes this year than last, but to also stress Bikes for the World's own key phrase, Changing Lives One Bike at a Time. One bike can really make a difference. One single bike helps up to four people, from the mechanic overseas who earns a living fixing bikes, to the family who relies on it for work or errands, or the student who uses it to get to school. And one bike a day here at home, turned into an entire shipment of bikes.

During this year's event at Triangle Motors, Richard met one of his youngest donors to date. Six-year old Alexis Nicholas received a new bike this past Christmas and she wanted to make sure another little girl could enjoy her old bike. So she brought it to the collection, "you can give it to someone who doesn't have a bike and can't afford one," she said.

In order to meet this bike-a-day goal, Richard rallied the troops. He called on quite a few members of the community who stepped up and helped collect bikes, store bikes, and also prep them for shipping. Hood Rotaract Club has been helping with this collection for years. Shane Sellers of Frederick Community College has also been delivering bikes to this collection for as long as we can remember.

New this year: believing that it is almost criminal to not recycle a bicycle, the Rotary Club established partnerships with the Brunswick and Thurmont Police Departments. Lost and stolen bicycles that were not reclaimed were transferred throughout the year to the Rotary Club who stored them in a vacant dairy barn.

"It's such a simple concept, but it has such an impact," said Richard. For many of us here a bicycle is seen more as a toy or recreational device. For many of our beneficiaries it's an important tool to a better life.

As an added bonus, the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek even added a satellite operation. Thomas Greiner chose Bikes for the World for his Eagle Scout Project and collected bikes in New Market that were also folded into this larger effort. It's this effort that put them over the top and enabled them to meet that added goal of filling an entire container.

A job well done by all.

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