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A year after the start of the bicycle project, over 1,500 bicycles have already been handed in. Of these, some 500 bikes have been refurbished for a new life with another owner. 'A good initiative,' says Hans van den Brule of Waardlanden. 'Because previously, an awful lot of still good bicycles went to the scrap metal.'

Affordable bikes for residents less fortunate

Not all bikes are reusable. These bikes are dismantled. The usable parts are used to repair other bicycles. Over 150 bicycles were given away free of charge to residents who cannot afford a bicycle. Stichting Leergeld and the Voedselbank ensured that these bicycles reached the right people. Also, 60 Ukrainian refugees received a bicycle. The remaining bicycles were sold for a small amount in the shops of partners such as Opnieuw & Co Leerdam, Kringloop Gorinchem and the workshop of SitY Academy in Gorinchem .

Work for people in vulnerable position

And that is not the only result. Spread across four workshops, nine people with a vulnerable position on the labour market are working as bicycle mechanics. Annelies Nagel of De Gezel explains: 'In our workshop, people work in a safe environment. Under the guidance of a learning master, people develop into craftsmen.'
Henk Knol of resident organisation Monnikenhof stresses the importance of the social connection at their site: 'By working together to achieve tangible results, people's self-confidence grows. This benefits them for the rest of their lives.'

Successful cooperation

The cycling project is a collaboration between SitY Academy, Monnikenhof residents' association, The Companion, municipality of Vijfheerenlanden, Again & Co Leerdam (formerly Kringloop Vijfheerenlanden) and Waardlanden. The partners have made a great effort over the past year to make the "A second life for used bicycles" project a success. Due to corona, the start-up phase experienced some problems. Fortunately, after that, the repair of the bicycles got off to a good start. 'We look back on a year in which a special and successful cooperation was set up,' says Van den Brule. 'We expect to fix up many more bikes in the coming years.'

Turn in an old bike or become a bicycle mechanic yourself?

Do you also have an old bike you want to give a second life? Then bring it to a our recycling points. Or would you like to become a bicycle maker yourself? Then contact one of the participating workshops.