Birmingham Bike Project
‘It does change their life.’
Birmingham Bike Project is run by Rivers of Gold CIC, an organisation that aims to help refugees, asylum seekers, and newly arrived people to live fulfilled lives in the UK. The organisation works to see people from refugee backgrounds achieving their goals and using their skills and gifts to achieve their potential.
What is Birmingham Bike Project?
Birmingham Bike Project aims to equip, enable and empower newly arrived communities in Birmingham, including refugees and asylum seekers. Those newly arrived refugees have to live on just over £35 a week. A day saver ticket in Birmingham costs £4.70, which makes it impossible for newly arrived communities to to live, and go somewhere each day. A bike can provide a real solution to high public transport costs, as well as encouraging a healthy lifestyle, building new friendships and the opportunity to explore their new city.
Birmingham Bike Project collects second hand bikes, fixes them up and give them to refugees and asylum seekers, along with a cycling safety kit, which includes a helmet, lock, lights and pump.
So far, the project has been run solely on volunteers. These volunteers repair the bikes with help from refugees, which encourages them to utilise their existing skills, or learn new ones. Rather than fundraising to help refugees buy bus tickets, the Birmingham Bike Project provides a more sustainable and beneficial solution, which empowers refugees, supports their mental wellbeing and gives them autonomy. The project also organises local bike rides to allow refugees to explore their new city, but also integrate into the community and socialise.
To date, the project has given out 32 bikes but the demand is growing quickly through word of mouth alone. There is also a demand for the project to supply bikes for children and many services who are keen to start referring their service users. At the moment, the organisation is at capacity so has to say no, but they are looking forward to expanding to accommodate this.
If successful, what will you use your LoveBrum funding for?
Birmingham Bike Project would like to employ a project coordinator to manage and support the growth of the project. The funding would also allow them to cover volunteer expenses, buy much needed equipment and parts for repairing the bikes, as well as 20 cycling safety kits to give out to refugees with their new bike.
Cost of project
Where can people go to find out more about Birmingham Bike Project?
Helen Clare, Director
Tel: 07761 964 334