Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Urgent request for a bicycle donation to an Iraqi refugee

Crossposted from Albany Bicycle Coalition:

I'm working with a local group affiliated with Bethlehem Neighbors for Peace and Women Against War to assist Iraqi refugees who've recently moved to the area. One of the men who's moved here desperately needs a working bicycle. Do you know of anyone willing to donate a man's bike or spare bike parts (Tom can rebuild some bikes we've found with the donation of spare parts)? ...

I did look into the Troy/Albany Bike Rescue program, but that scenario doesn't look like it will work especially well as regards the needs of this man and the other refugee families. The man's English is limited, as is the case with many of the refugees, thus his ability to rebuild a bike from scratch under the guidance of one of the bike rescue volunteers would be hampered. In addition, he needs this bike quickly, so that he may begin looking for jobs, etc., as the limited funds provided to him by the government as a refugee will soon dry up (basically, they receive 6 months' assistance). Basically, needed the bike yesterday, so I need to locate a bike for him quickly. This is going to be a scenario that's going to emerge over and over again, as more and more refugees will be relocating to the area in coming months.

Thanks for your time, and please feel free to call me at 542-1043 or 330-5409, as talking might be more efficient than emailing in this case. We can pick up and/or store any bikes donated, by the way.

Megan Gillespie


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