In its third 12 months, Free Bikes 4 Kidz Detroit has narrowed its variety of assortment websites from greater than 20 to only 4, attributable to COVID-19 issues.
As a result of the Grosse Pointe assortment location amassed in its first two years extra bicycle donations than another metro Detroit location, Henry Ford Medical Heart—Cottage was chosen as one in every of this 12 months’s collaborating areas.
“COVID-19 has modified this 12 months’s donation day, however I’m grateful Cottage is part of protecting Free Bikes 4 Kidz going,” mentioned Marianne Langlois, director of Cottage. “I’m positive the group will come by means of once more in 2020, simply because it has the final two years.”
This Saturday, Oct. 3, the Detroit chapter of Free Bikes 4 Kidz hosts its third annual bike assortment, which turns used, undesirable bicycles into vacation items for youngsters.
Bikes will likely be collected from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Henry Ford Medical Heart—Cottage, 131 Kercheval, Grosse Pointe Farms, in addition to at its medical facilities in Dearborn, Sterling Heights and Royal Oak. Moreover, Residence Depot shops in Northville, Farmington, Rochester Hills, Woodhaven and Troy additionally function assortment areas.
That is the primary 12 months Residence Depot has joined the Free Bikes 4 Kidz Detroit effort.
Bikes additionally could also be donated on the Free Bikes 4 Kidz warehouse, 411 Piquette, Detroit, after assortment day.
This 12 months, as in previous years, donors will pull as much as the curb and volunteers will unload their bikes and supply a tax donation kind.
“It’s such a special occasion for all concerned,” Langlois mentioned. “There’s an important feeling within the air. The donors are pleased to see their bikes going to youngsters who will likely be pleased to have them. Mother and father like the chance to mannequin generosity. Owners welcome a spot to eliminate dusty previous bikes.
“There are simply so many smiles and a lot goodness with everybody coming and going for one frequent trigger — one thing we will actually use proper about now.”
Donations to Free Bikes 4 Kidz give younger folks with out bikes the chance to expertise the enjoyable, freedom and bodily exercise a motorbike can deliver. By the generosity of metro Detroit companies and residents, organizers hope to exceed greater than 1,000 donations this 12 months.
“We’re hopeful Henry Ford crew members, our many sufferers, households and communities which have come by means of previously will do the identical in 2020,” mentioned Paul Szilagyi, Henry Ford’s vice chairman of major care and medical facilities. “We all know that protecting youngsters lively will increase their probabilities of doing properly at school and in life and reduces dangers of power illness that impression their households and the well being system. We additionally know that this 12 months is very difficult for a lot of households financially, so offering bikes on the holidays comes as a reduction to many dad and mom working exhausting to offer for his or her youngsters, particularly the particular issues like items.”
The pandemic has modified this 12 months’s assortment, organizers mentioned. Moreover a bicycle scarcity that might have an effect on donations, there are COVID-19 security tips to weave right into a well-oiled course of that runs the bikes from assortment, by means of repairs, to security inspection earlier than their closing arrival with a brand new proprietor. There are also fewer areas to drop off bikes this 12 months and presumably fewer volunteers attributable to issues over COVID.
To keep away from the dangers of spreading COVID-19, there received’t be an in-person giveaway this 12 months. As an alternative, Free Bikes 4 Kidz will ship bikes in bulk to organizations that request them.
Regardless of the challenges confronted due to the pandemic, native organizers by no means thought of canceling the occasion. As an alternative, they determined to adapt and implement stringent security protocols to guard these concerned, from donors to recipients.
“We really feel optimistic and decided,” co-founder Bob Barnes mentioned. “We’ve got religion the group will come by means of once more. We’re doing our greatest to serve a group that has been exhausting hit by the pandemic. All youngsters deserve an opportunity to pedal right into a more healthy childhood with a motorbike and so they want it greater than ever in 2020.”
Free Bikes 4 Kidz depends on volunteers, beginning with those that journey from assortment website to assortment website, loading donated bikes right into a truck and dropping them off on the Free Bikes 4 Kidz warehouse in Midtown. The Platform Group donates the house and plenty of different organizations additionally assist the trouble.
On the warehouse, volunteers transfer the bikes by means of an elaborate system that features restore, refurbishment and a closing security and high quality examine earlier than they be part of different bikes quickly destined for brand new homeowners.
Every bike additionally comes with a helmet, a should, mentioned Stacy Leatherwood, M.D., Henry Ford pediatrician and doctor champion for childhood wellness for Henry Ford LiveWell.
“It may possibly’t be impressed sufficient the significance of bodily exercise for youngsters, particularly in an period when childhood weight problems and power illness are affecting youngsters at greater charges,” she mentioned. “Security and stopping accidents from changing into critical accidents must also be entrance of thoughts. The larger image is that pleased, wholesome youngsters result in happier households, a happier group for all of us.”
For extra info, go to fb4kdetroit.org.
— Jody McVeigh