Open Trail would like to give a huge thank-you to players of the People's Postcode Lottery and the Postcode Community Trust for their grant of £1,400 to help us get more local young people cycling! They provided 50% of funding to help us buy bikes from Spokes CIC, Kidderminster to supply bikes to several local schools! The bikes have enabled us to deliver cycle coaching sessions to children age 5-11 from Comberton Primary School, Beacon Pupil Referral Unit, Franche Primary School and Catshill Middle School. Benefiting a total of 315 pupils!
Spokes CIC is a well-known long established organisation in Kidderminster that helps train adults with learning difficulties, and provide them with workplace skills. They take in old unwanted bikes, refurbish them to very high standards and sell them on to the public. This equipment was then used with mostly disadvantage children to develop their confidence, emotional resilience, team working skills and raise their aspirations. That’s a beautiful circle of wealth!
Many of our beneficiaries have never had the chance to ride a bike before. These bikes have helped us teach 35 children to ride for the first time! Their faces were beaming when they finally fulfilled the lifelong dream and learned to ride completely independently.
The project helped us enable young people to gain a sense of achievement, new skills, confidence and the ability to explore their local area without relying on a car. For many they’d already decided they were “bad at sports” but cycling was new and different, no bats, no balls, no running. Their parents and teachers have reported that the level and enthusiasm for cycling has really increased since the start of the project.
100% of users reported a feeling of achievement and more confidence
100% of users expressed having fun and wanting to ride more often
100% of nervous/reluctant users are glad they did it.
“WOW look at the bikes!”
“Can I ride that one?”
“Are these really for us?”
Pupils aged 5-11 at Beacon School
Pupils at Beacon PRU School (sites in both Kidderminster and Redditch) have a wide range of physical and emotional difficulties. Our cycling sessions gave them something new to get excited about and to focus their attention on. They all showed great determination and progress throughout their sessions. They are very proud to have their own bikes and helmets and are always asking when they can use them again
Pupils from Comberton Primary School: “There are 2 things I love: swimming and cycling. Swimming because I love to be in the water and cycling because you (the coach) teach us things that no other teacher can, thank you!”
“When I’m on a bike I feel like I can do anything”
Case study: Jeff, Kidderminster. Jeff was already a strong rider and aged 11, one of the eldest in the group. However he knew it! He wanted to race past the other riders and lacked respect for less able cyclists and his younger peers. He once said to a girl “you’re so slow, get out of the way!” His coach took him off the bike and made him witness the effect of his words, how the girl didn’t want to ride anymore and was very sad- he’d made that happen. The coach told him to go and make her feel better. He apologised and said “you’re doing well for a beginner”. She continued to cycle. The coach then encouraged him to tell the riders what he likes about their riding. He said “I like how you always look where you’re going”, “I like how you stand up to pedal”, “your position is really good”. Now Jeff is in high school but he occasionally pops in on Fridays as an assistant coach for after-school cycling club. The children ask “is Jeff coming today?”- they really like his support, the coach can rely on him to be helpful and Jeff has learned valuable life skills and is getting a great experience in learning how to coach.
Without your help in introducing bikes to these schools stories like this would not happen!
Group Leader: “I can’t believe she did it! She usually says no to everything, she worries what others will think but she’s done really well. I’m so grateful for the opportunity for all the kids, we can really use this to build on for their future development with us”
School teacher “This is his niche! He hates the classroom, he doesn’t work well with other pupils but here he’s a different child. He has found it easy and has supported his class mates who struggle. It’s wonderful to see him feeling successful and proud, the best in the class with no adult help! I can’t wait to tell his mum!”
Child: “I was so nervous at the start, I’ve never liked bikes, or sports. It was fun and I actually feel proud that I completely ALLLL of the challenges. My heart is still racing, I can’t believe I did it”
Open Trail would like to say a huge thank you to the players of Postcode Community Trust. With your help we have got 340 young people on bikes, some learning to ride for the first time, some some who would never have the chance to ride otherwise! By signing up to play you not only help yourself but you make an unprecedented impact on local people and communities, it’s always a win-win! You can’t lose!