1st Dec 2021

A trained volunteer works on restoring a bike.

A grant from the Opencast Charitable Fund at the Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland has helped a Newcastle charity provide free, refurbished bikes to 32 people.  Recyke y’ Bike, based in Byker, specialise in refurbishing donated bikes and selling them at reasonable prices or in some instances, providing them for free. This grant allowed them to offer bikes to people in need with a priority given to asylum seekers and refugees in Newcastle. 

Elaine Holdsworth, Senior Philanthropy Advisor at the Community Foundation said: 

“For asylum seekers and refugees arriving in this country, a bike can provide a vital lifeline. This is especially so for those unable to work whilst their claims are being processed and having limited financial resources. For a relatively modest grant, Recyke y’ Bike have been able to give hope and greater independence to so many people”. 

Recyke y’ Bike save unwanted and abandoned bikes which would otherwise end up in landfill. These bikes are refurbished or recycled by a team of volunteers who are supported, trained and assisted by paid mechanics. The organisation are supported by a team of volunteers particularly focused on under 18s, people seeking asylum and veterans. 

Sara Newson, General Manager at Recyke y’ Bike explained the positive impacts of being given a bike: 

"We're so grateful to the Opencast Fund for supporting our work. The demand for bikes has never been higher and having a bike can make such a positive difference to someone's physical and mental health as well as potentially saving them hundreds of pounds in transport costs.  

“We're really proud when we can turn an unwanted bike into an item someone will treasure and we couldn't do it would funders like the Opencast Fund and all the wonderful people who donate their bikes." 

For more information about funding opportunities at the Community Foundation visit www.communityfoundation.org.uk/apply 

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