The truth is, with only a big pile of BIKES none of this would be possible!!! We couldn't teach kids skills, we can't make programs work, we can't host events and we can't pay the bills. We need PEOPLE. In fact, we are looking for people just like YOU!
You don't have to be a bike mechanic to get involved. Lots of different people can push the pedals of Open Roads toward success. The best event to start with is Fixapalooza. Here are some of the ways you can help:
Social Skills Volunteer: Do you know how to follow directions? Do you know what it looks like to be a good learner? Can you teach a young person why it's important to look at someone when you shake their hand? Then come to a program and show your skills. You can help role model, or you can be a short-term teacher. Whatever your social skills we have a spot for you.
Mechanical Marvel: Maybe you built your first bike by yourself. Or maybe you just know how to take apart a clock. The knowledge of how things work is critical at Open Roads. Mechanic skills translate well between machines. And a bike is a great tool to teach a young person the basics of how to use tools and understand parts. Come show what you know!
At Open Roads, we are always looking for bicycles. Whether yours has been forgotten, orphaned, outgrown, or just past it's prime, we would love to give it a good home. We can accept bikes at the Kalamazoo Bank Street Farmers Market , at Fixapalooza or by arrangement. Sadly, we can't pick up bikes from your home. We just don't have the resources at this time. However, we would love to have you bring your bikes down to our sites. Follow the links to figure out how to find us. Remember, we use every bike we get!
Hope to see you and your bike soon!
Working at Open Roads is not about just fixing bikes and help kids. It is about providing knowledge, teaching skills, and sharing your passion for bikes. We are building community. We are making a difference. If you are someone who wants to join in this work, let us know. We'd love to meet you. You can learn about open positions here, get an application here, and ask more questions here.
It's more than dollars. It's investing in a child. Your financial support allows Open Roads to keep doing what we are doing: empowering kids. By donating, you are becoming a part of our family and making it possible for a youth in our community to increase their social skills, mechanical skills and earn a bike. So, get the wheels turning for a kid. All it takes is the click of a mouse. Your support goes far. Your financial support helps us provide our programs in many different locations in Kalamazoo County.
Your donation allows kids to:
Any amount helps our program. Here are some possible amounts and what we can do with them:
$25 - A Quick Tune-Up Your donation will allow us to provide a free tune-up to a young person who comes to our workshop with a bike that may not be safe or smooth to ride.
$50 - Real Wheeler Your donation will make it possible for us to replace a set of wheels for a youth whose bike has bent, broken or defective wheels.
$100 - The Apprenticeship Maker Your donation will ensure that we can help one youth have an apprenticeship to learn real world work experience in a local bike shop.
$250 - Tools Trainer Your donation will ensure that we have all the tools we need for the Open Roads season. And it takes a lot of wrenches, pliers, screwdrivers and truing stands to keep us going all year!
$500 - Social Skill Superstar Your donation will allow 2 young people to learn the solid social skills needed to support all those great bike mechanic skills. This includes skills like introducing themselves, listening, sharing materials and showing respect.
$750 - Safety Supporter Your donation will allow all youth for the season to have brand new bike helmets, locks and T-shirts. Safety is one of our core values.
$1500 - Bicycle Career Creator Your donation will allow us to create one 8-week youth program for 6-8 kids. This allows to us get staff, materials and space for a great program!