The non-profit organization Bikes for Kids supplied a shipment of 35 new and used bikes this week at Nanaimo’s Georgia Avenue Community School, to be passed along to underprivileged children.
The organization acquires bikes donated by community members and by Canadian Tire, and also receives bikes from the RCMP, which gives them previously stolen but recovered bikes that were never returned to their owners. Bikes for Kids partners with the Nanaimo Brain Injury Society to also provide helmets to children receiving bicycles.
Greg Nowik, the founder of the organization, said they have delivered a total of 2,800 bikes to schools and families around Vancouver Island.
“Every child deserves a bike, right? And every adult that can’t afford transportation, it’s a great way to get around,” said Nowik. “When we were kids, we were on our bikes all day long, so every kid deserves to have a bike either to get to and from school, to and from work, or just enjoy some exercise.”
Multiple volunteers join Nowik every week at their shop in Ladysmith to fix and restore bikes that may have been unusable otherwise. Sometimes Canadian Tire will provide him and his team bike parts for free, and they even will donate brand-new bikes to the organization.
He said Bikes for Kids also has plans to work with the Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society to provide bikes for newcomers to Nanaimo.
Those who want to donate used bikes and bike parts can bring them to DBL Disposal Services on Tenth Street.Follow @Baileyseymour02