Women's shelter starts bike share plan
A Toronto women's shelter is hoping to do more for some of its clients by providing them with basic transportation.
Nellie's is starting a bike sharing program.
The idea, the shelter said in a news release is to "provide women with access to bikes that will not only increase their mobility and physical wellness, but most importantly allow them to connect with their community, access support, and have some fun in the process."
Kiki Iverson has already donated a bike and she posted a call for others to join her on her Facebook page.
The women who use the shelter need bikes, said Iverson, but they also "need friends. They need family. They need community. They need help for sure."
In just one hour Iverson had 10 people offering to donate.
"I can see that it's made a huge change and there are people who want to help, " said Megan Hogg who runs the bike donation program.
Three women have already received bikes through the program but the shelter says the need is growing.
"One of the primary things we've heard from women is the sense of freedom and being able to get around," said Hogg. "Being able to get out of the house and the confidence that comes from being active."
Bike shops and cycling advocacy groups have jumped on board too, helping to fix-up the gently used bikes.
"Long-term we hope to be able to provide women with bikes and connect with other shelters in the city as well," said Hogg.
Nellie's says it is also looking for children's bikes.