Bikes for the World provides rewarding and educational team-building volunteer opportunities to a wide range of community groups.
Examples include faith communities, service clubs, Scout troops, schools, youth programs, and alumni associations of all types, from university to the Peace Corps. Activities include collecting, prepping, sorting, and shipping thousands of bicycles for individual and community empowerment around the world.
Bikes for the World has worked with a diverse range of faith communities over the years, beginning in 1995 with two churches—St John the Evangelist Catholic Church (Columbia MD) and the Herndon Friends Meeting (VA).
Bar Mitzvah Service Projects
Bikes for the World works with Bar (and Bat) Mitzvah’s to collect bikes for getting students to school, adults to work, and goods to market. For example: Jack Barker wrote us:
Dear Bikes for the World,
I had a great time with my collection…I cannot wait to volunteer again! Enclosed is a check to BfW…This money is from my bar mitzvah money and BfW is the charity that I decided to donate to, to conclude with my bar mitzvah project! I hope this check will benefit BfW and I hope to be volunteering again very soon!
We work with public and private schools at all levels—elementary, middle, high, and university—to collect bikes, load bikes, and engage in special projects. We have been the beneficiary of fundraising efforts by schools in Virginia, North Carolina, Washington DC, and Maryland. We are an approved “student service learning” partner to the Montgomery County (MD) Public School System and other systems and individual schools. In 2008, the Calvert County (MD) Public School System executed a very successful one-day bike drive at four sites, collecting more than 700 usable bicycles and simultaneously loading an entire container of 450+ bikes for a program in Uganda.
Another example is provided by our intership work. Students attending the all-girl Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart (Bethesda MD) have a commitment to community service. During the school year, every other Wednesday is dedicated to fulfilling this Social Action commitment. This partnership began in the 2011-2012 academic year with two students and an advisor assisting Bikes for the World. Subsequent academic years have seen continued contributions and an expansion to six students beginning with the 2012-2013 academic year. Students learn basic bike mechanics, organization, and recycling/reuse skills.
Bikes for the World provides opportunities for Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts to meet their respective requirements for Eagle community service and Gold and Silver community service. Typical is managing a bike collection, where the Scout takes responsibility for securing a site, publicity, planning, and managing a dynamic event overseeing volunteers and dealing with the public. Bikes for the World provides mentoring, tools, and supplies.