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 non-profit 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.
Throughout the month of July, the Better Bike Share Partnership (BBSP) team brought cycling education workshops and rides to two organizations that work tirelessly to give teenagers educational opportunities and support.
The first group that the BBSP team partnered with was Youth Emergency Services (or YES), which is a non-profit organization that has provided immediate shelter and support services to Philadelphia’s children, youth, and families for over 67 years.
The second was the Teen Scholars program at Mighty Writers, specifically at the El Futuro branch, which is located in the Italian Market. Mighty Writers is an organization that has been working since 2009 to provide writing programs for youth using critical thinking and discussion.
The BBSP team was excited to partner with both organizations to provide classes throughout their summer programming and to engage their youth groups in diverse activities using Indego Bike Share.
Over a span of two weeks, the BBSP team worked with the teens at YES to teach them how to ride safely in Philadelphia’s streets. The group also learned the importance of wearing a helmet when BBSP team member, Vanessa, did the watermelon test. She dropped a watermelon two times – once with a helmet strapped around the melon and once without a helmet.
Meanwhile, the Teen Scholars at El Futuro participated in a two-segment workshop that focused on bike maintenance skills as well as urban riding basics. The students also had a group discussion that examined the different barriers that can prevent certain communities from biking.
At the end of each week, the BBSP team led YES staff and youth on a group ride to help test out the new skills they developed during the course of the workshops (wearing helmets of course). Though the Teen Scholars ride got affected by rain, the youth were never discouraged. In the end, the teens received certificates for completing the entire program.
BBSP would like to thank both organizations for encouraging and incorporating them in their program during the summer. The BBSP team was thrilled to introduce YES and Mighty Writers to Indego and all the possibilities that biking can bring!