Bike Graduations- More than a bike

March 20, 2023

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One of the flagship programs of Two Wheel View is our Earn-A-Bike program. Earn-A-Bike is a unique program that focuses on Social and Emotional Learning using the bike and bike maintenance as the teaching tool. At the end of the 10-week session, each participant has done the work and earned their own bike, helmet and lock.

Each lesson of Bike Club focuses on a specific component of bike maintenance. Participants are encouraged to use problem-solving skills, ask questions of each other and their facilitators. The program balances routine with new situations, giving youth the opportunity to apply their new skills and knowledge to novel real-life situations. Bike mechanics are not always simple or straightforward. Dealing with these frustrating situations, youth are able to develop keen emotional management skills. We name our emotions, and try to understand why we are feeling this way. Not only does this develop a sense of self-knowledge, but also builds upon empathy as we explore the others in our community and how to listen to all the different voices, and seeking out the voices that are missing.

Bike Club graduations are more than the presentation of bikes to their new owners. Each graduation is a time for celebration and reflection. Youth come in as complete strangers, often unsure and keeping to themselves. At the graduation, we see one big, shared community where the youth celebrate each other’s achievements, and have created strong identities and bonds that last far beyond graduation.

Being able to look at yourself, understand your emotions, seek out new answers, empathize with others, and build resilience are no easy feats. Program after program, we are so thrilled to see such strong team members and leaders emerge. The bike they’ve earned is a symbol of the hard physical, emotional, and social work the youth have undertaken, and the growth that they’ve achieved through this program.

This sessions' graduations have looked a little different this year in the midst of the pandemic. We can’t gather and celebrate together as we have in the past, however we are safely facilitating pick-ups and deliveries to ensure that each participant gets their bike! We are all extremely proud of each person, and the wonderful things you’ve achieved! Congratulations to all the Bike Club Graduates of Winter/Spring 2020!

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Intentional community building should not be overlooked. When we come together, we talk through our insecurities, our uncertainties and share stories to help us better understand each other and the world we live in.

TWV Team Member

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