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Calgary Cares: YYC Kids Ride puts out call for donated bicycles

Click to play video: 'Calgary Cares: YYC Kids Ride rehoming bicycles to kids' Calgary Cares: YYC Kids Ride rehoming bicycles to kids
WATCH ABOVE: A Global News video about YYC Kids Ride. – Jun 25, 2020

It’s a summertime staple for many kids, strapping on a helmet and heading out for a bike ride.

But not every kid in Calgary has access to their own bicycle.

A Calgary group, YYC Kids Ride, is looking to change that. It was formed to try and give every kid the opportunity to hop on two wheels.

“It’s just as simple as the ability to make that dream come true for a child,” said group founder Gar Gar. “[We] were facing this time of uncertainty and stress, but also looking to the kids.”

Read more: Calgary Cares: Calgary charity sees huge spike in need, spending $10K per month to help

Gar put out a call on social media for used bicycle donations and the Calgary community answered, with more than 60 bikes donated so far in the initiative’s first week.

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Calgarian Greg Belanger saw one of Gar’s video posts and went one step further, opening up his home garage and recruiting a friend to come help fix up the bikes before they are rehomed to their new owners.

“There’s going to be a lot of happy kids after this,” Belanger said as he unloaded a minivan full of donated bicycles. “I’ve been a lifelong Calgarian. We’ve got a spirit in this city, a spirit of giving and contributing. When the need is there, we all step up.”

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The bikes are all tuned up to make sure they are in safe working order before they are rehomed.

Gar has already handed out a handful of bikes and received some unforgettable reactions.

“We open the door and [the kid asks], ‘Whose bike is this?’ I asked, ‘You want to try it?’ So he jumps [on and rides] it around and later comes back and I said, ‘It’s yours!’ And you can see him jumping back on it and [he] says, ‘Yes!’ And he didn’t say another word, he just took off,” Gar said with a huge smile.
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READ MORE: Calgary Cares: Green Fools Theatre helps kids through COVID-19

The group is now holding a bike giveaway at the Forest Lawn Community Association on Canada Day.

Anyone who wants to donate a bike or to sign up to receive one can reach out to the group on its Facebook page.

YYC Kids Ride is also looking for more volunteers who can help pick up bike donations.

 

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