Well, there’s no doubt about it. 2021 has been a unique year.
We’ve all spent this year adjusting to a new way of living and working. While we’re looking at a rather disappointing end, it’s important not to lose sight of all the incredible hard work and achievements across the year. We’ve enjoyed reflecting on our 2021 and want to thank the incredible Bike for Good team, our funders & supporters and our service users; we really couldn’t have done this without you!
Our volunteering training and support programme has absolutely flourished! We’re seeing our wonderful volunteers develop new skills and brimming with confidence. A whopping 5212 hours of volunteering time has been contributed over 2021! We currently have 59 volunteers actively engaged with us, including 39 new volunteers since summer.
Our hubs got organised!
The pandemic really affected our bike shops and we changed the way we operated. Over 2021, we found the time to become much better at organisation and planning to keep everything running as smoothly as possible. The appointment booking system for repairs has been a real positive and along with that, reorganising the workshops and warehouses to optimise the space has been really helpful in maximising productivity. We also ended the year with a big clear-out and gave ourselves more space to work with. We’re going into 2022 with new sales times, now being open for bike sales at both West and South Hubs Tuesdays-Saturdays.
Key Workers Campaign
We started the year with a campaign to support key workers, through free bike & equipment loans, road skills lessons and 1-1 confidence-building lessons. The campaign was such a success, we swiftly ran out of loan bikes, but got back on our feet thanks to a kind fleet donation by Glasgow Life.
We launched Pedal Pals in April, a new service allowing cyclists to connect with each other & go for rides together across Glasgow. We had 80 sign-ups over the first weekend after launching and have close to 200 users now. Click on the image below to sign up for Pedal Pals
The Big Give for Build Your Own Bike
In May, we took part in the Big Give #GreenMatchFund to raise money for our Build Your Own Bike course, to allow more young people and those living on low income to gain more skills and a sustainable form of transport. We absolutely smashed our target, thanks to all your donations and a shout out from the First Minister! Our Build Your Own Bike (BYOB) courses have provided 33 people who face barriers to the job market with a fully functioning refurbished bike that they have stripped down to bare components, repainted in colours of their choice, and rebuilt again!
We went viral on TikTok
We started a TikTok account this year and went viral in May, with over 148,000 views on one of our first videos! Follow @bikeforgoodglasgow for more content next year! Click the screenshot below to view the video.
In June, we launched a new joint-venture with Vélogik to specialise in BTOB bike maintenance. Motion Forward maintains and repairs bicycles for sustainability, rider comfort and safety and has grown in strength since launching. The Motion Forward team work hard to maintain all types of bicycle fleets and equipment across different sectors.
New Scots project
We launched our fantastic New Scots project offering skills, training, and cycling activities to over 80 asylum seekers and refugees. There have been many different trips & fun activities over the year.
Glasgow Women on Wheels Festival
GWOW was a month-long festival that took place in September. It offered inclusive events and activities to address these inequalities by reaching women who are underrepresented in cycling. The festival aimed to increase the number of women and non-binary people cycling in Glasgow.
We delivered 50 events across every day in September with 517 participants attending overall. On average, participants said that they made 43% of their journeys by bike before the festival. After the festival, participants said they were making 53% of their journeys by bike on average. 31% of festival participants couldn’t cycle or were new to cycling, with 25% overall saying that they’d like to cycle for leisure but need to upskill or gain confidence.
Our new cycling hub on Civic Street
In September, we also launched our shiny new cycling hub in the North of Glasgow at Civic St! We welcomed new team member Su who led the launch and we’ve already been hosting film nights, cycle lessons and Dr Bike sessions there since.
Health & Wellbeing support
Over the course of 2021, we have supported over 15 community organisations and their 200+ service users to take up cycling in order to improve their mental and physical health. 5 of these organisations went on to create their own cycling hubs. We also provided over 150 people on a low or no income with year-long access to nextbike through our Bikes for All program.
Govanhill Gears Youth Project
Our Govanhill Gears youth project has really come into its own, with a new partnership with the Loading Bay skate/BMX indoor park, and the young people getting to build up their own BMXs, which they now proudly ride around the neighbourhood!
Celebrating a big milestone
The pandemic robbed us of the chance to celebrate our 10-year anniversary last year, so we were buzzing to finally throw a 10-year +1 party in October. We also said goodbye to a key member of our team who had been with us for the same length of time – Victoria who headed up our Community Outreach team. It was wonderful to celebrate all her achievements and reflect on 11 years of Bike for Good.
Diversity Working Group
The Bike for Good Diversity Working Group (consisting of staff members, board members and volunteers) worked hard across the year and made some excellent strides. We did staff training and volunteer training, developed our women & non-binary programme, launched a Women of Colour cycling group, reviewed our communications, made our website more user-friendly, hosted LGBT+ events and did an external Diversity & Inclusion Audit with MÒR DIVERSITY.
We had a full programme of events for Cop26! From cycling events & exhibitions to led rides in partnership with Cycling Scotland, to film nights, to Dr Bikes with Motion Forward and to cycling infrastructure focus groups with Glasgow City Council. It was a busy couple of weeks for us.
New Bike Mechanic Traineeship for Women & Non-binary people
Also in November, we launched our pilot bike mechanic traineeship starting in January, which is the first of its kind in Scotland. We had 42 applicants for the 6 spaces on the course. We can’t wait to see how the course develops in 2022.
HT550 by a wonderful supporter!
We had the most beautiful end of the year! Annie Evans bikepacked the Highland 550 Trail this week to raise funds for us at Bike for Good. She battled all the Scottish elements and became the first person EVER to complete the route in Winter, in only 8 days! She also smashed her target, and raised over £2220 for us! We’re so grateful to her and still in awe of her incredible journey. Check out a_girl_outside on Instagram & look at her recent posts.