Riding a bicycle is one of the most fun things kids do while growing up, but this isn't always possible if the child has special needs. A local non-profit is helping change that.

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When I was growing up, a bicycle was everything in my life from when I was big enough to ride one until I could drive, and I still like riding one today with my son.

Riding a Bicycle While Being A Kid

I can remember riding with my friends to the local community center during the summer. They had a gym there where we could play basketball, there was a pool table, a ping pong table, and lots of other activities for kids and seniors.

One of my friends, Chris, that I would meet up with at the community center was in a wheelchair and could not walk. Chris would get dropped off by a van and we would all ride our bikes there. I can remember him saying, I wish I could ride a bike. Things were different when I was growing up and they didn't have bikes for kids with special needs so my friends got some rope and we would pull Chris in his wheelchair with our bikes. I know it's not the same but Chris enjoyed being a part of the kids and our bikes. He turned 16 first and they did have a way for him to drive first so he would take us cruising. These were some fun times.

Non-Profit Helps Kids With Disabilities Get Bicycles

There is a local non-profit here in Grand Rapids, Michigan, that can help children and teens with special needs get new, adaptive bicycles. The group is called Friendship Circle and they offer a lot of different services to help kids with special needs.

Friendship Circle of Michigan's goal is to provide every individual with special needs the support, friendship, and inclusion that they deserve. They are hitting out of the park with the Great Bike Giveaway.

Great Bike Giveaway

In order to get a special needs child a bike, you have to register the child here. There are three ways a child can receive a bike.

  • Most Votes - The child who receives the most votes in their selected bike category will receive a free adaptive bike.
  • Random Drawing - Any child who receives 50 votes or more is automatically entered into a drawing for the bike they selected.
  • Fundraising - If a child does not get the most votes or wins the random drawing a fundraiser is set up to raise money for a bike. Friendship Circle works with companies that build special needs bikes to get better pricing for the bikes.

Voting For Kids To Get New Bikes

The voting will end on March 16, 2022, at 12 p.m. (EST). If you would like to vote and donate for a special needs child, you can do so here. Winners will be announced on March 17 at 12 p.m. (EST). The fundraising for bikes will end on March 30 at 12 p.m. (EST).

WOOD recently spoke to the founder of Friendship Circle Bassie Shemtov who said, "It's really a dream come true. We're talking about kids that are stuck in their wheelchairs. Their siblings are running out on their bikes because what child at six or seven years old is not excited to go out on their two-wheeler and ride around the neighborhood or go to parks and our kids with special needs are stuck at home. All of a sudden, they get to be a part of it."

This is a great opportunity to help some special needs kids be able to have a bike to ride. Please vote and donate to a child here.

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