In a paragraph or two, describe your nonprofit’s mission.
Charlottesville Community Bikes is a non-profit bicycle shop that works with Virginia Organizing (VO) to promote environmentally-sound transportation, recycle bicycles, and make cycling accessible in Charlottesville, VA.
Charlottesville Community Bikes’ mission is to increase bicycle ridership in Charlottesville, VA especially among the most underserved people and provide bicycle advocacy through bicycle refurbishment, providing bicycle facilities and bicycle education. Community Bikes is a race, gender, sexual orientation, disability, income, and religion discrimination-free environment where all are encouraged to participate.
Our philosophy is to teach people how to do something not do it for them. Teaching and empowering are the goals.
What need in our community brought about the creation of your nonprofit?
Community Bikes was started based on the need for people to have reliable transportation to get to their jobs and other obligations.
How has your nonprofit made a difference in our community?
Gave away the largest number of bikes yet! We gave away 150 free bikes to people in need, including 50 children’s bikes and 100 bikes to people from the Haven, IRC, On Our Own, International Neighbors, the Piedmont House, the Standing Rock movement and other local organizations.
Refurbished and sold more than 190 other bicycles. This provided low-cost, quality transportation to many, as well as keeping the bicycles out of the waste stream.
More than 1,300 visits to the shop were made in 2016 to volunteer, do bicycle repairs or be paired with a bike.
More than 100 community members volunteered about 500 hours of time, including at our monthly community mechanic nights where we provided dinner, space and support for people to learn how to be bike mechanics.
We took the lead on Bike Month, planning for the city again in 2016. We organized a bike-in movie night series at Champion Brewery, the Tour de Coop, weekly social rides and women’s repair workshops.
Had another successful Bake and Bike fundraiser, which raised $1,700. Event planning for 2017 has already begun.
How can community members help you achieve your mission?
We are a volunteer run organization and therefor ALWAYS need, want and desire volunteers. We train!
Tell us a story that has come out of your work.
Last Tuesday during open shop time we had a full house. Three new volunteers stopped by and were helping build up kids bikes which we give away free. Good thing, because a mama and four kids came in just an hour later, and they all needed bicycles. So while we were helping a few people learn how to fix their bikes and while folks were using the outside air pump to inflate their tires, we also had four cuties ranging in age from 4-9 trying out their new wheels.
Learn more about Charlottesville Community Bikes.
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