The Full Cycle Initiative is a Two Wheel View program facilitated at the Morley Community School on the Stoney First Nation, west of Calgary. This program includes two components: a bike mechanics course (Bike Club) and a 5-day bike expedition through traditional Stoney-Nakoda land, focused on cultural and environmental education. This initiative is supported by the Government of Alberta, the Strachan Hartley Legacy Foundation and the Calgary Foundation.
Full Cycle encourages youth to attend school and to engage in positive activity that builds community and enhances youth resiliency. The aim of this program is to reduce risk factors facing First Nation’s youth and increase protective factors that will impact their long-term personal growth and positive development.
This spring we worked with Anne Miller of Constellation Consulting Group to evaluate this initiative. Participants were grouped into two groups: In-school session (ISS) participants and trip participants. Not all students from the ISS group were able to attend the trip but all trip participants had been a part of the ISS.
Increased self-esteem – 81% of ISS participants and 92% of trip participants identified feeling better about themselves because of the program.
Increased sense of adventure and desire to try new things – 81% of the ISS group and 85% of the trip group wanted to try more new things because of the program.
Positive peer interactions are fostered through the program – 88% of the ISS participants and 100% of bike trip participants interacted more with their friends in the positive program space created by Two Wheel View.
Increased physical activity and desire to live active lifestyles – 75% of the ISS group and 100% of the trip participants felt more active as a result of this program.
Increased environmental awareness and sustainable activities – 92% of bike trips participants increased their environmental awareness and 75% of in-school session learned how to recycle and repair things because of the program.
What participants said:
“[I liked] when we got together and got to know a little bit more about each other.”
“[I liked] feeling like a mechanic while fixing a bike.”
“[I liked] being with my friends more often”
“I want to be outside more often”
“I’ve tried to become a better leader”
“This week (the bike trip) is probably the happiest I’ve been in a long time!”
“My favourite part was being away from technology and phones. At home, everyone is always texting or looking at their phones.”
“My favourite part was seeing the mountains up close for the first time.”
We look forward to expanding this program in the 2016-2017 school year in the First Nation’s community of Eden Valley – southwest of Calgary. Thanks to all our teacher champions who make this program possible through their hard work and dedication to their students – you inspire us! Thank you to those who provide financial support for this program – you are changing kids’ lives from the seat of a bike.