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About

About

 

Overview

The Bike Project refurbishes donated bikes, provides free skills, accredited training and work experience for local jobseekers and disengaged young people.  The bikes are sold to the local community at an affordable price and the income “recycled” to sustain the project.  In the seven years that the project has been running, over 300 people have benefited from the project with over 100 achieving an accredited qualification and over 60 having gone into work, volunteering or returning to full-time learning.

Donated bikes

Over the seven years of operation, the bike project has been given over 15,000 bikes by members of the local community or local organisations.  A unique selling point of the project is our ability to collect donated bikes from anywhere within 15 miles of Guildford thanks to our team of volunteer van drivers.

Skills training

We have very experienced and formally qualified bike mechanics overseeing our workshops who provide cycle mechanics skills training to our volunteers, members of the local community on work experience placements and learners.

Accredited training

The Bike Project is registered with IMI Awards to deliver Level 1 and Level 2 Cycle Mechanics qualifications.  In the near future we will expand the offer to include a Level 3 Diploma.

Alternative Learning Provision

We provide a formal learning opportunity for young people in Year 10 or 11 who have been excluded from, or are experiencing difficulties at, school.  This includes young people with learning difficulties, on the autistic spectrum, with anxiety or having emotional or behavioural difficulties.

Sales of bikes

Donated bikes are refurbished to a very high standard and sold with a three month warranty to members of the local community.  The bikes are typically priced at around one third of the price of an equivalent quality new bike.  Customers include less well-off people who cannot afford a car or even public transport; students from the nearby Surrey University and wealthier families who in buying from us are making a financial contribution to sustain the good work of the project.  All the customers enjoy the physical and mental health benefits of cycling at the same time as reducing carbon emissions.

Recycling

The project is an end-to-end recycling initiative.  Anything donated to us that can be is re-used or upcycled; anything that cannot is recycled by us – we even go to the length of separating aluminium from ferrous materials and recycle these separately.  This generates income which, when added to the income from sales and servicing of bikes and from providing formal training, makes the project self-sufficient financially.

Volunteering

Apart from two employees, the project is exclusively run by volunteers in a wide range of roles including workshop mechanics, office support; retail, recycling and driving.  The project could not exist without the fantastic contribution that the volunteers make.

Outcomes

What people experience or achieve at the project is very varied but could include:

  • General increase in confidence or well-being
  • Becoming more employable
  • Achieving a formal qualification for the first time in their life
  • Rehabilitation from being excluded from mainstream education

The Bike Project

November 2019