While the elves are busy in Santa’s workshop, technicians at Kelowna Cycle are busy at their winter workshop on Sutherland Avenue repairing donated bikes. Kelowna Cycle was recently voted Best Bike Shop in the Central Okanagan.
The bikes are destined for local charities and for young students who cannot afford a bike at the nearby Raymer Elementary School.
“All of our refurbished bikes go back to our local community,” says owner Patrick Rosen, whose donation program is now going into its fifth year. “With snow on the ground our technicians use this time to get donated bikes road ready for when the biking season in the spring. The staff at Kelowna Cycle believe a bike is not only a great form of transportation, but it enables employment, education, exercise and peace of mind — but most of all, freedom.”
Kelowna Cycle has put a call out to the community for donations of old bikes. All donations are accepted; technicians refurnish those they can and will salvage parts from those beyond repair. Donated bikes will go to the Kelowna’s Women’s Shelter, Kelowna Gospel Mission and the Kelowna Branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.
“We are so grateful for the support of Kelowna Cycle,” says Kelowna Women’s Shelter executive director Karen Mason. “In a typical year, more than 225 women and their children find a safe place to stay at the Kelowna Women’s Shelter, and transportation is often an issue, so having bikes for them to use is a wonderful addition to the services we offer.”
“The bike program has been a blessing for many of our clients,” says Kelowna Gospel Mission executive director Randy Benson. “Owning a bike offers opportunities and can enables someone to get groceries or to class, or for those looking for work, make it easier for them to get around to possible employers.”
More than 50 bikes have been given to those in need since the program began.
PHOTO: Kelowna Cycle technician Dan Tombs tunes up a donated bike destined for those in need.