The Bike Project: Getting Refugees Cycling!
During this week, Article 50 week, it is worth noting the good work of the The Bike Project. Its MO is simple: “We take second-hand bikes, fix them up, and donate them to refugees and asylum seekers." Some of the bikes that the project receives go on to be sold through the project's Bike Shop, which ensures the charity's long term sustainability.
The public can help by donating a bike, volunteering, sponsoring a bike, or setting up a bike hub. We recently visited the splendid Bike Project workshop at 12 Crossthwaite Avenue SE5 8ET, which is located off Sunray Avenue between East Dulwich and Herne Hill. The shop was buzzing with volunteers repairing bikes and refugees sizing up models, and prospective buyers checking out racers, hybrids, mountain bikes … you name it.
The project's financial logic is sound. 13,500 asylum seekers come to the UK annually. Meanwhile, over 27,500 bicycles are abandoned during the same time. One abandoned bike can save a refugee £20 a week on bus fare, making it a savings of £1040 a year … and with 1,300 refugees receiving bicycles in The Bike Project’s first three years, this adds up to a collective savings of £1,352,000!
You can donate bikes at the Crossthwaite Avenue workshop or at 16 other hub locations in London, and also at 1 in Oxford which range from private homes to community centres and on varying days and during an assortment of times. The Crossthwaite Avenue workshop is usually open M-F, 10am to 6pm. http://thebikeproject.co.uk/donate-a-bike/