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After that event I went out another time to pass out the remaining items I had and when I ran out of goods I contacted the good folks of Planet Bike to see if they could provide more products. I also contacted my friend James Thomas (JT) of Serfas, they too make bicycle accessories.
About a week later I received another package from Planet Bike and by that time JT and I had talked about him coming out with me to pass out the products that Serfas donated
On the day of the event, JT and I met up in Downtown Santa Ana, on Ross and Civic Center. With our bags full of goods, we headed out to talk to the people. This time we solicited the help of one of my daughters to take photographs to show what we’re doing in hopes it will motivate others to join our efforts, heck that’s how I got JT and Serfas to join us.
Yours truly on the left and JT on the right. Yep, he had a roller bag full of stuff!
Here’s a great shot of JT helping out a woman who is clearly grateful for the items he gave her. You can also see how many people are out there.
Once the word spread that we were out there passing out bicycle safety products, we were getting approached by people who would run up to us asking for lights or a lock. Here’s a couple of guys who desperately needed lights, locks and JT even gave one of them a cushioned seat cover. These guys thanked us so many times and what’s great is, the items they received would make a great impact because it can save them money from getting a ticket by the local police who will fine bicycle riders that do not have lights and it can help save their lives.
This gentleman came running up to us and said, “I heard you guys are the ones who are going to save my life!” I responded by saying, “Is it because you need a light? If so, ya that’s us!” Here’s JT giving him a quick lesson on how to operate the lights.
While JT was helping out another rider, I was talking to an elderly woman (not sure if you can see her behind the man) who was asking for lights. I told her that I need to make sure that I only give them to people who actually had bicycles. She then explained that she needs it when she’s walking at night. She also told me that she has had too many close calls with cars and needed something so they can see her. I figured that staying alive was a good enough reason to give her a light. But she couldn’t figure out where to put it and I suggested she clip on her purse handles, she thought that was a great idea and thanked me.
As we were heading out, this bicyclist rode up to us asking if he could get something for his bike. I gave him a Planet Bike pump, light and bell. He gladly accepted and loved that the bell even matched his bike!
JT also gave him the lights he had left in his bag.
We had about 60 photos from the event, feel free to take a look at them.
I would like to thank the generosity of Planet Bike as well as Serfas. Without their help, this would have never happened. I super appreciated JT coming out to help and I think he understood why I do this. He saw that people are genuinely grateful for the products that we gave. In the grand scope of things, the basic bicycle needs of a light can literally save someone’s life.
As you can see lights and locks are needed. But from talking to the people we served, we found that they are also in need of tubes, pumps and patch kits. What’s great about Planet Bike and Serfas some of the items they donated were trade show samples or perfectly working products with some sort of cosmetic blemish that doesn’t pass QA for retail sales, but like I said, THEY WORK. So that means some of these items will sit in a warehouse collecting dust. But through our community service efforts, they have been re-purposed and making a difference.
If you or the company you work for would be interested in helping out our community service efforts, please contact me so we can coordinate. INFO@BikeCommuters.com