What we did on our volunteering day – Andrew and Ying
15 August 2016, by Jiang Yingxin
Andrew and I volunteered at The Bike Project for an afternoon.
They give bikes to refugees and asylum seekers who can’t afford public transport. Did you know asylum seekers only get £36 / week in benefits? They also teach female refugees to cycle.
We kind of expected to be fixing bikes and giving them to refugees, but what they needed was someone to clean and fix second hand bikes to sell, to earn some money to keep the rest of their operations going. A step further removed from the beneficiary, but equally crucial!
They gave us a couple of bikes to clean and fix up a bit. Andrew already knew how to fix bikes so they mainly just left us to it, and checked it at the end. Towards the end we had to clean a really awesome mountain bike probably worth thousands of pounds which somebody had very generously donated!
While we were there, quite a lot of people came in to pick up some bikes. We didn’t really talk to them or interact with them, but it was nice to see that lots of people were benefiting from the charity.
How you can help
If you have an old bike you don’t need any more, do consider donating!
Sign up for a volunteering session with Benefacto, Sessions take place on Tuesdays from 14:00 – 17:00, and after office hours on Thursdays from 17:00 – 20:00.
Things Ying achieved
- Got 26 likes on a facebook post (a rare achievement for me!)
- Changed a brake cable all by myself
- Didn’t damage a really valuable full carbon mountain bike
Things Andrew achieved
- Featured in a facebook post that got 26 likes
- Used two types of spanner he’d never used before
- Managed to avoid snapping off his thumbnail