Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Chain Gang "Recycle-a-Bike" Program

Have fun as you volunteer for the new recycle a bike program. As a ChainGanG volunteer you will help guide a group of six to eight children between the ages of 10 and 13 from Martinsville Middle School on how to repair and assemble donated bikes. Children will benefit from this program as they:
  • Earn a bike at the end of the 6-week program
  • Learn new life skills
  • Build self esteem.

Children will also learn helmet safety, bike safety and rules of the road. This program is to encourage and increase physical activity among children through biking and provide bikes to children that do not have one.

The program will be held on Tuesdays from 3:45 to 5:00 PM. Scheduled program dates for this school year are May 5th, 12th, 19th and 25th. The program will start again in September when ids return to school. A certified bike mechanic from Cardinal Bike in Roanoke will come to Martinsville and teach volunteers how to rebuild a bike and perform a bike tune-up. A tentative ate for training is April 25th. New students will rotate through the program every six weeks. The program will be lead by a Martinsville Police Officer and a certified Bike Smart Basics Trainer. The ChainGanG program is sponsored by Activate MHC, Martinsville Police Dept., Martinsville Middle School and Cardinal Bikes. Anyone who is interested in volunteering or would like more information may contact Activate at 638-2523 x204.

The ChainGanG Earn-A-Bike Club offers kids a chance to earn their own bike by completing a series of hands-on lessons in basic bike mechanics and bike safety, which also focus on personal responsibility, achievement and self-empowerment. This program is available to students in Martinsville Middle School that do not have bikes and are currently taking or have previously passed the Bike Smart Basics P.E. curriculum.

How Earn-A-Bike Works

  1. Week 1: Kids learn the names of the parts of the bicycle, how to do a safety check and rules of the road. (Laminated picture of a bike where students have to match the bike parts with the names)
  2. Week 2: Kids learn how to change a flat tire and adjust brakes.
  3. Week 3: Kids take a bike comprehension test and choose their bikes. (Best score gets first choice out of our Earn-A-Bike inventory, second best score chooses next and so on down.)
  4. Week 4: Kids start working on the bike
  5. Week 5: Kids continue working on the bike.
  6. Week 6: Kids finish fixing the bike. Attach front & back lights. Kids receive a lock and helmet if they do not have one. Cardinal Bike (Roanoke) will test the bikes, if all is good after the test, the bike goes home with the student that built it!

Earn-a-Bike Rules:

  • RESPECT each other, your instructors, the tools, and the bikes.
  • Start on time, end on time. Put away all tools, parts and bikes before leaving.
  • Address adults respectfully as Mr. or Mrs. or Ms.
  • No horseplay, keep your hands to yourself, no running or wandering around the shop.
  • Always get approval from the adult in charge before starting or changing a task. Begin a task, complete a task.
  • Do not leave the shop without permission.
  • Children must ask an adult to use the restroom.
  • Helmets must be worn at all times when riding a bike!

Article contributed by Activate M-HC

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