Looking for bikes
A student club at Jefferson High school is asking to have your bicycle.
The Junior Statesmen of America are collecting cycles in good condition or repairable as long as the frame is not broken or encrusted with rust. The students will donate the wheels to Bikes for the World, a non-profit who refurbishes the bicycles and sends them to developing countries.
JHS student and Shepherdstown resident Josephine Lo suggested helping Bikes for the World after her family donated over 80 bicycles in 2009, all collected from the Shepherdstown area.
“Instead of collecting dust in our garages, the donated bikes can make a huge improvement in someone’s quality of life.” Lo encouraged.
She explained how the non-profit uses the donated bicycles. “The bikes will be given to families in poverty to help them get to work, school and medical care.”
According to the website for Bikes for the World, they also serve two other needs. “We generate skilled employment in bicycle repair and maintenance overseas, and provide satisfying environment and humanitarian community service opportunities for volunteers in the United States.”
Along with bikes, the students are collecting usable spare parts for bicycles. The mechanic at Pedal and Paddle in Shepherdstown says donated parts can be helpful when repairing bikes for low-cost help to some who would receive such a bike.
Bikes for the World suggests a ten dollar donation accompany each bicycle. “To help us transport the bike from its convenient neighborhood drop off all the way to a remote village in Africa for example. Each bike cost about twenty five dollars to ship. It does help us affect more lives with every dollar donated.” explained the organization’s Outreach Coordinator, Yvette Hess.
You can bring your donation to the Shepherdstown Town Hall on April 26th. The Junior Statesmen of America will be collecting there from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The students will also be collecting at the Long John Silvers in Charles Town on the same day.
If one wants to donate a large number of bicycles, the students are offering to pick up and transport them. Contact Lo at email@example.com
The JHS student club is also looking for volunteers to help prepare and load bikes for shipping on April 26.
Bikes for the World is based in Arlington, Virginia, and says they have shipped over 100,000 bicycles since they began in 2005. They send bicycles to El Salvador Central America, Kenya Africa, The Philippians, and nineteen other countries. Any donation to them is eligible for a tax deduction. The website for the organization is full of information on who they are and what they do. Find more information at bikesfortheworld.org