Riding the road to giving
By Patte Smith; photos courtesy of VICC
“YOU ARE Project reCYCLE” is a statement that the nonprofit Project reCYCLE (PR) organization firmly believes. Providing a bike to a child that has never had one or needs one is their absolute goal, and the people who donate bikes and volunteer their time are key to their success.
The Village Idiots Cycling Club (VICC) sponsored a recycle bike drive benefiting Project reCYCLE on October 25 at Cielo at Castle Pines parking lot on Happy Canyon Road. The warm-hearted crew braved the cold and snowy weather, and thanks to Cielo at Castle Pines for opening up to keep them somewhat warm. Generous people brought used bikes to the VICC bike drive, while volunteers loaded the donated bikes on the PR trucks.
“We were fortunate enough to collect 30 bikes for Project reCYCLE in spite of the less than hospitable weather,” said Bill Pieseski, community committee chair for VICC. “If anyone that missed the event has bikes to donate, the bicycles can be dropped off at any BikeSource or Elevation Cycles bike shops. We are looking forward to our spring bike drive; hopefully the weather will be more cooperative.”
VICC has expanded over the years, and while enjoying cycling together, the group has raised more than $200,000 for local charities, such as the Help & Hope Center in Castle Rock. Cycling and supporting the community is their passion.
Since 2010, PR, along with its many supporters like the VICC, have refurbished more than 15,000 bicycles for students in the Denver metro and surrounding areas. The Dream Bike school program, Earn-a-Bike, and foster children at Bikes for Tykes holiday giveaway are the programs for local kids. VICC also partners with Bikes for Humanity, and in September it provided about 50% of the bicycles the organization shipped to Zambia.
While PR provides bikes to the kids, the program also empowers the children to succeed at academics, attendance and attitude in order to “earn” a bicycle.
“We are so proud to provide a tangible item for the kids, especially in times like this year,” stated Jon Buck, the executive director of Project reCYCLE. “Thirty percent of the children we provide a bike to have never had a bike, and 40% have had their bicycle stolen. We want to continue building relationships with these kids to support their positive growth and instill in them believing in themselves.”