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Pedals 2 People recycles bicycles for reuse

Pedals 2 People,” a local nonprofit, recently collected and repaired 10 old bicycles and donated them to Volunteers of America’s Crosswalk program for homeless teens in downtown Spokane.

“We believe bicycles can be agents of change that empower people to build healthier bodies, lives and communities,” said Liza Mattana, board president.

The group repairs and refurbishes bikes, offering free bike tune-ups at community centers, and collecting donated bikes, fixing them and giving them to people who cannot afford a bike.

“Having a bike means more than a way to exercise and be out in the fresh air,” said Laurel Kelly, director of youth programs at Volunteers of America, 525 W. Second.  “For teens, a bike is a reliable form of transportation.  It can mean making it to a job interview.”

Crosswalk is an emergency shelter, a school drop-out prevention program and programs that break the cycle of youth homelessness, helping young people avoid or leave the streets by re-uniting families, providing survival necessities, finding safe homes, teaching self-sufficiency and offering hope and support.  Each year it serves more than 1,000 youth aged 13 to 21.

Liza said Pedals 2 People will give Crosswalk more bikes when more are donated.

“We believe the bicycle is an approachable, healthy and sustainable option for transportation.  It can provide an enjoyable activity that can strengthen bonds between people,” she said.

Pedals 2 People connects with other organizations to “recycle” bicycles locally and for communities abroad. 

For information, call 981-3348 or email pedals2people@gmail.com. For information on Crosswalk, visit www.voaspokane.org.