3 minutes reading time (586 words)

Featured Volunteer: The Slades

We LOVE our families that volunteer TOGETHER! Meet the Slades. Alix, Ben, Rose (not pictured above), Philip, and Daniel. What's that? They look familiar? Well, yeah, they should! Ben (dad) got his start with Keith Oberg back in the beginning. He was the mastermind behind all things computer, and believe us when we say, Keith needed all the hand holding he could get! Let's be honest, we all did back when computers were really starting to take off, or rather when there was a huge shift to the internet. You can read all about that here, when we featured Ben back in 2015. You may even notice it's a completely different blog page...that's how long ago that was.

But this is about the hands on, greasy, tool turning aspect of their contributions to Bikes for the World. Ben got his start with BfW before the kids, before the marriage even! It may have started at a keyboard, but Ben really enjoyed the bike part too. And so did Alix. They were working collections and prepping bikes before there were kids. Then along came Rose, their first daughter, and then the twins, Philip and Daniel.

You can see the boys here, learning about how an adjustable wrench works, when we were out at King Farm. Last night, the guys were on their own in the warehouse (above) actually helping mom and dad a time or two. Rose was off working toward getting her driver's license...I know right!?

We found ourselves overwhelmed with bikes this week as we prepared for our next shipment to Costa Rica. Now that school is out, folks are on vacation, and our Thursday night volunteers are dwindling. Just as Yvette was rearranging bikes trying to squeeze out just enough space for next week's pickups...in walked the Slades. Cue, the Superhero music! 

Here's why we like families who volunteer together so much. It's not just seeing that sharing of volunteerism, but when one volunteer becomes a family of four...well, productivity quadruples, just like that! They got so much done last night, we now have plenty of space for next week.

And if 4 means More, 8 is Great. Keep reading to find out how Rose saved the day in 21 and 22!

Since we are featuring the family, let's not forget Rose, just because she couldn't make it last night. Rose contacted us during the pandemic to schedule a slot for her scout troop to come in for a service project. And not just once, but a couple times!

Again, cue the music... This was when we were drowning in bikes, unable to bring in the number of volunteers we had become dependent upon. Rose reached out to us directly and set everything up herself, showing clear signs that the Slade kids were growing up. 

Rose and her Scout troop 5697 fought through those annoying (and life saving) face masks to swing some wrenches on our piles of bikes. They got us ready for shipments to Costa Rica and El Salvador and more importantly made room in the warehouse so we could collect more bikes.

It's been a thrill watching the Slade kids grow up. It's even more exciting to see them take on qualities we love in their parents- the learning, helping, giving back. If we are lucky maybe Rose will put in some practice miles driving everyone to the warehouse again this summer!

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