It has been a while since we have posted an update and for good reason. We were conducting 3-5 trips per week over a six week period in June and July. During this time we hosted 129 kids on rides. Kids who, without the Trips For Kids WNC program, would not have had the opportunity to participate in mountain biking.
One highlight from the summer was seeing 3 different kids learn how to ride a bike without training wheels for the first time. Our volunteers, and staff from the organizations we partnered with, selflessly spent time with the individuals, teaching them the basics of riding. All of the 3 kids were able to participate in the rides later in the summer.
Thanks to the following organizations for allowing us to be a part of your summer programming:
- Boys and Girls Club of Transylvania Co.
- I Have A Dream Foundation
- Children First, Communities In Schools
- YMCA of Western NC/ Buncombe County Schools
- Kid Power of Park Ridge Health
So now what? Even though the summer rides have come to an end, we have still been very busy. The opportunity opened up to start a new program that goes hand in hand with the TFK WNC mission: providing mountain bike outings to youth who would not otherwise have that opportunity.
We are in the works of opening a shop space that will house a used gear and bike thrift shop, as well as space for kids bike mechanic classes. Thanks to support in the form of a grant for starting a new program, we have put a dent in start up costs.
The location is 89 Thompson Street, Unit H: in between Biltmore Village and Oakley Neighborhood.
We will continue taking in donated gear and bicycles : “Dusty but not Rusty”, fixing them up and selling them at low costs so that the community will have access to low cost transportation and recreation. The plan is for this venture to pay the bills so that we can offer a community space where kids can learn how to work on bikes.
We want to be very careful not to compete with all of the local bike shops who have been so generous in so many different ways, and continue to be. For this reason, we will not be doing tune ups, consignments, or carrying any retails items. We also will not be ordering parts for bikes unless they are the bikes that have been donated for re-sale.
We hope to open the doors to the public by mid September. We still have a lot of work to do but are getting there. In addition to used gear and bikes, we need tools, bike stands, shelves, display cases among other things. If you are interested in donating your used gear or bikes, contact Stephen: firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are interested in helping out with start up costs, or pledging the $500 for one month’s operating costs, you can do that right now: Donate by clicking here.
And lastly we have new jerseys. This is your opportunity to join our team and help us spread the word about what we do. The jersey is by Starlight Apparel and is very lightweight and breathable. We only printed a limited number so get yours before it is too late. The are for sale at REI Asheville, and we have men’s and women’s cuts!!
Thanks for reading and thanks for your support. This is a community effort and would be impossible without the help of this community!