Thursday, March 7, 2019

Refugee bikes - an update

I began collecting and refurbishing old adult bikes for newly-arrived refugees over three years ago.
In that time, I've salvaged over 100 bikes and/or frames that would have gone to the landfill. Out of those, over thirty had broken frames and had to be stripped; their useful parts went towards repairing some of the remaining sixty and change.
None of this would have been possible without help from so many lovely Portlanders who've passed their bikes along to me.
So right up front, Thank You for your generosity, for the bicycles, locks, lights and other parts you've given to me so I could provide our newest arrivals with sustainable transportation. Many of the recipients have been using those bikes to get to language classes, to go to doctor appointments and the grocery store, and to find and keep work. I have seen only a couple of those bikes in use since I sent them on their way, a reflectio of the reality that affordable housing is getting harder to find and is mostly being procured farther and farther out of the central city area, and so most of the bikes are underneath riders living and working in Gresham, Milwaukie, Salem and even farther away.

Still, those bikes are back on the road and being ridden by people who really need them.
And I couldn't be happier about that.

So today I finished a bike, a nice older mountain bike that took a scavenged/repaired rack and stem shifter upgrade beautifully; and now have another bike in the stand that I'll hope to get to this weekend. And with that, I have room for more donations.

So if you live in or near Portland, and have an adult bicycle that needs a new home, consider passing it onto me for someone who will really need it and appreciate it as they get on their feet and begin new lives here in Portland.

And if you have bicycle locks and lights, I could also use those -- they're the hardest things to find used and I can only spend so much out of pocket on this project.

Find me on Facebook, drop me a Private Message, and let's arrange a handoff soon. I'm around until May and have time to bang out some bikes. Thank you, and happy riding.

And if you'd like to see an album of many of the bikes that have been donated and refurbished, check it out here on Flickr.

Below: The latest, bike number 61.

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