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May 22, 2012

Kids Helping Kids: 4-H Bike Day

On a warm, sunny afternoon in early May, a group of dedicated and motivated young members of our community gave back and completed a service project at Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services’ (SFBFS) Saca Community Learning Center (Saca CLC). A group of youth from Sacramento 4-H started collecting used bicycles last year from the community and under the guidance of their adult mentors they learned the skills necessary to refurbish and repair these bicycles. These resourceful students fixed up a dozen bicycles and prepared them to be gifted to a group of deserving community members in need of a bike. This is the third year that the American River 4-H Club’s Bicycle Project has chosen to share these bikes with families from SFBFS.
For many of the people who attend SFBFS’ programs, the gift of a bike can provide much needed means of transportation and recreation. Many of the families and individuals SFBFS serves have to make difficult decisions to manage their limited resources and gasoline is a huge expense that many are being forced to give up. Getting kids to school, going to or applying for work, grocery shopping and attending doctors’ visits are getting harder to manage. For many, riding a bike can be a free, healthy, easy and fun form of transportation to ease these budget crunches and encourage self-sufficiency and financial independence from purchasing gas.

Mireya Estrella, Parent Education Program Manager and James Moore, Adult Education Program Manager at SFBFS’ Saca CLC identified twelve men, women and children who needed bicycles for transportation.

On May 12, families attended 4-H Bike Day where children and adults each received a bicycle, lock, helmet with safety fitting and the opportunity to test out their new bikes on a bike rodeo chalk course. The smiles on everyone’s faces were contagious. Each person who received a bike, helmet and lock were very grateful and excited to have the improved ability to get to where they need to go. SFBFS feels very blessed to have the opportunity to collaborate again with 4-H in Sacramento to provide this much needed service to our community!

Submitted by Heather Kohlmeister
Youth Education Program Manager

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