LSA is getting closer to launching our free Mobile Bike Repair service, thanks to the CAN’d Aid Foundation. Read the press release below for details.
TUCSON, AZ (July 05, 2016) – A free mobile bike repair service for Tucson is now much closer to rolling out, thanks to a recent grant from the Colorado-based CAN’d Aid Foundation. Living Streets Alliance (LSA) was the latest recipient of its “Treads + Trails” grant program. The non-profit will receive $5,000 to help purchase and equip a cargo van that will travel throughout the greater Tucson region providing free basic bicycle repairs and bike education to area youth.
“We could not be more excited to work with Living Streets Alliance to help provide a free mobile bike repair service in the Tucson area. CAN’d Aid’s Treads + Trails programs are all about increasing access and opportunities for people to get outside, ride and enjoy the outdoors, so teaming up to launch a mobile bike repair center just makes sense.” says Sarah Leavitt, Program Director of the CAN’d Aid Foundation. The Foundation, whose tagline is “Doin’ good ‘cause we CAN”, was formed as an immediate response to the massive flooding that devastated the towns of Lyons and Longmont, Colorado, in September 2013. Since then, its do-goodery efforts have evolved into Towns, Tunes, Treads + Trails and Love Yur Mama programs – contributing more than $1.5 million to programs throughout the US to date.
The Mobile Bike Repair service for Tucson will be offered, in part, through LSA’s Safe Routes to School Tucson program, in partnership with the City of Tucson Bicycle & Pedestrian program. Now in its third year, the program engages roughly 10,000 K-8 students throughout the greater Tucson region annually. Last school year over 45 K-8 schools in nine school districts engaged in bi-annual bike- and walk-to-school challenges through the program, while additional schools have requested to be involved in the coming year. LSA also works with eight “focus schools” to provide ongoing support for programs and events throughout the year to increase biking and walking rates amongst students, their families, and school faculty.
“This service provides a simple solution to a major challenge that we’ve observed through our work in the community,” says Emily Yetman, Executive Director of LSA. “Not everyone has the time and resources to access a bike shop, which means that a minor maintenance issue – like a flat tire – can lead to a bike falling into permanent disrepair or being abandoned completely. We want to ensure that all of Tucson’s youth have access to bikes in safe, working condition, so this our opportunity to literally bring the ‘bike shop’ to them and give them the tools and confidence to continue riding for years to come.”
As part of the Mobile Bike Repair Service, mechanics will engage students in the repair of their bicycles, providing them with basic knowledge of how to fix a flat tire and do other minor repairs themselves. The service will also provide biking and walking safety education to help ensure that area youth know the rules of the road and how to be safe while out riding and walking.
Earlier this year, Living Streets Alliance received a grant of $1,400 in bicycle maintenance tools from Minneapolis-based Park Tool, to help equip the Mobile Bike Repair van. To date, LSA has raised a significant amount of the funds needed to purchase the cargo van, but underwriting and sponsorship opportunities remain. Yetman adds that a partial donation of an automobile would allow them to launch earlier than expected, helping the program exceed its goal of providing 50 bicycle repair clinics for area youth in the coming year.
The mission of Living Streets Alliance (LSA) is to “promote healthy communities by empowering people to transform our streets into vibrant places for walking, bicycling, socializing, and play.” LSA is improving access for active modes of transportation in the region through outreach, education, advocacy and research. Visit http://www.saferoutestucson.org and http://www.livingstreetsalliance.org/ for more information.
About the CAN’d Aid Foundation
- Towns – building strong communities
- Tunes – for your eyeholes and earholes
- Treads + Trails – get outside and get after it!
- Love Yur Mama – save the blue marble