Here on the GJEL blog, we keep track of many issues related to bike safety, including new proposed texting laws for cyclists, the environmental benefits of cycling, and a cyclist’s legal rights after being “doored” by a parked cars. This week, GJEL Accident Attorneys was proud to give back to the East Bay’s cyclist community by donating two brand new bicycles to Cycles of Change, a non-profit organization that promotes healthy urban communities throughout the region.
Representatives for the organization confirmed that Bay Area citizens donate about 2,500 bikes to Cycles of Change each year. Since the group was founded, Cycles of Change has trained more than 5,000 low-income students and 60 teachers in the Berkeley, Oakland, Alameda, San Lorenzo and Albany school districts about bike operation and maintenance.
Evan Lovett-Harris, a staffer at Cycles of Change APC, an affiliated non-profit bike partnership in the East Bay, says that the benefits of introducing someone to a bike extend beyond transportation. “It’s about getting in shape and going somewhere,” he said. “It’s about saving money, but it’s also about connecting with our local environment and getting engaged with what’s going on, whether it’s reducing pollution or meeting other people in the community.”
In addition to selling refurbished bike supplies, Cycles of Change APC provides low-income housing for 500 formerly homeless individuals, providing some with job training skills. I’m particularly interested in the site’s “earn-a-bike” program, which gives participants a chance to work toward the goal of a bike while learning about it. Last year, more than 200 volunteers collected enough credits to “buy” their own bikes.
We’re proud to help out with Cycles of Change, and applaud the organization for making such a profound difference here in the Bay Area.
Photo courtesy of Cycles of Change.