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Saturday, March 12, 2016

BICAS, Adios mi amiga

We like to donate our bikes so someone else can get some use and enjoyment from them when  we move on to a new model. We heard about BICAS at the shop that I purchased my new mountain bike from. When we arrived at the shop, there were already several people waiting to volunteer so they could have credit towards a bike or parts.
 
 I didn't think that leaving my bike  would make me nostalgic. But after 15 years of adventures all over the US including and Canada, it made me pause and think back.
 

The shop motto: “We don’t fix your bike for you” (a temporary solution), “we teach you how to do it” (an empowering opportunity). This has enabled BICAS to become much more than just another bike shop and allowed them to remain true to our educational mission.
For community members who don’t have much money, they also offer a unique Work Trade Program where they can earn credit, which they may use to pay for shop time, or our Earn-a-Bike Program.

BICAS welcomes people of all ages and all walks of life to learn DIY bicycle maintenance skills at the shop. Community Tools is a resource for some of the most vulnerable members of the Tucson community, including the homeless, veterans, immigrants, refugees and  youth. Many of these people rely on their bikes as their sole method of transportation, and rely on BICAS to help them keep it rolling week after week!
The people in the shop were looking for a new shock or fork before we walked out the door.



Many bike parts are made in to metalwork art sold to support this effort.
 
Bikes Not Bombs movement was originally dedicated to providing sustainable, human-powered transportation to communities in developing countries by setting up, in those countries, local community bicycle maintenance spaces and training local bike mechanics, the key idea being the establishment of local self-reliance; but similar needs were soon identified within the U.S. itself, particularly in the inner cities.

3 comments:

  1. Very cool program. I can understand how you would feel nostalgic about getting rid of your old bike, but what a great next life for it to have.

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  2. It kind of makes you feel good to know it will go to a new home.

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  3. This is the first I have heard of their way of business. What a great 'statement of work' for them to follow and help others in need. If you stop in Pacific Coast Cycles in downtown Carlsbad CA you will find a much different atmosphere if the owner is there. I have not talked to him in 40 years but from the online reviews of his shop these past few years I see he is still rubbing people the wrong way. What a great idea you had for turning in your older bike that needed repair for someone else to use after it is fixed.

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