Our Partnership with the Tucson Indian Center
Through our collaboration with the Tucson Indian Center, BICAS is honored to continue our proactive tackling of bicycle culture’s barriers to many communities. Through this partnership, we’ve provided people who visit TIC with access to quality, dependable bicycles, and facilitated individual connections with the programs BICAS offers.
Among the 25 people and their families referred through this partnership thus far, many have become regulars at BICAS.
“With one particular family, I’ve seen the parents and their kids use our Community Tools and Work Trade programs numerous times, and it’s been fun seeing them develop bike mechanics skills,” fondly recalls our collective member Benji, who developed this partnership. As Youth Coordinator, Benji instructed one of the children in our Youth-Earn-A-Bike camp this summer, teaching them mechanics skills and how to ride a bike.
Ojibwe and citizen of the White Earth Nation in Minnesota themself, Benji is excited to support other Native people getting access to healthy and sustainable forms of transportation. “Developing a more sustainable life is an important part of the process of decolonization, and reducing dependence on oil is especially important to Anishinaabeg / Ojibwe people, as many of our nations are being threatened by oil pipelines,” Benji explains.
Each referred participant gets a high quality commuter bike, a helmet, a rechargeable light set, a U-lock, and $40 in BICAS credit, and is connected with BICAS staff who can teach them skills to keep their bikes in prime condition. Benji looks brightly forwards to continuing this partnership and developing similar partnerships with other communities in the future, with preeminence to directly invite those who mainstream biking culture alienates.