The Better Bike Share Partnership (BBSP) is an effort led by the City of Philadelphia that works to ensure that Indego bike share is accessible to all Philadelphians. The Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia is a nonprofit advocacy and education organization working as part of the Better Bike Share Partnership to support bike share and biking education. The Better Bike Share Partnership is funded by the JPB Foundation.
By Brenda Hernandez
Having a healthier Latinx community while creating a supportive space that empowers Transgender youth has inspired Emmanuel Coreano to work with Indego.
We recently sat down with Emmanuel Coreano, community recruiter for Trans Informacion Project at GALAEI, and former member of the TIP youth program, to talk about his experiences and what made him strive toward becoming an advocate for building a healthy culture within his community.
Last summer, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia teamed up with GALAEI to connect youth with Indego in order to create a supportive space for diverse community rides. We met Coreano, one of the many students involved in the Indego Street Skills and Learn to Ride classes at GALAEI.
Coreano was able to lead a small helmet safety demonstration during a ride from what he learned at our Indego Street Skills class. Now Coreano is a part of the team at GALAEI advocating for a healthy culture and life empowerment for Trans Youth.
“Inspiring to connect communities to healthy living has gotten me involved,” said Coreano. “I think that biking in our community is great. I believe it’s something that should be done often. General activity should be increased in our community.”
Coreano added that healthy living is an issue often overlooked in many communities throughout Philadelphia. But it’s time for that thinking to end.
Francisco Cortez, youth program coordinator at GALAEI said starting programs that involve more youth builds paths for community outreach. Youth programs, he added, help establish opportunities for youth to take advantage of the resources out there for them, and helps them discover more connections and increase youth development.
“Community bike rides and programs like this, in many ways, can tie in support of queer empowerment and leadership development,” said Cortez. “It is also healthy and a fun activity that can be a productive way to connect people like my youth, with safe space associators like the Bicycle Coalition and Indego who can be supportive also in culture.”
“For me, personally, it’s important to be active for my health, just showing them that it is important,” said Coreano. “I learned a lot during the summer class and I’m glad I was able to share the experience and actually give a lesson to my peers about the use of helmets.
“Although, there should be a better infrastructure in our area. Biking from my neighborhood into the city can get a bit scary, to be honest, but now I feel more confident. Last summer was my first time using Indego; I normally use my bike in the summer. Although I’m starting to get more involved into using our bike share program.”
We at BBSP are thankful to be partnering with GALAEI team and getting to know Emmanuel who continues to advocate for their community and believe his experience can inspire and strive others to use Indego bike share as a source to ensure a healthy lifestyle.