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Bike education program for incarcerated boys of Monterey County rolls into 9th year

To help with 2020 Bike Nights, scroll to the end of this post.
April 15, 2020 begins the 9th year of the Monterey County Probation Department Youth Center bike education program.
How was it possible to complete eight years of instruction with only volunteer help and no funding source? Here’s how:

On Oct 26, 2011, simply due to caring about the well-being of youth—including incarcerated boys ages 14-17 who come from all over Monterey County—Bicycling Monterey’s founder attended a community meeting [click for Monterey Herald related story] in the county seat and its largest city, Salinas, where the Youth Center is located. A brochure distributed at the meeting listed dozens of education and treatment programs offered at the Youth Center, plus three they wished for.

Among those three was bicycling instruction. When asked why no bicycling instruction, the Youth Center director said “I’ve tried for a couple years, but just can’t get any volunteers.” Bicycling Monterey’s founder thought to herself: if I can’t make that happen, I’m resigning all my volunteer bike advocacy projects in protest!

Thanks to others who pitched in, Bicycling Monterey launched the Youth Center’s bicycling education program on April 15, 2012. In October 2015, a new component—Bike Nights—was added to the program. For Youth Center bike ed program history and details, see “Youth Center – first high school bike tech class in Monterey County!”

One of the two faithful bike repair instruction volunteers since 2012 had to take a leave of absence in November 2018. This means that rolling on was only possible because of…

Frank Henderson!

Above and below, Frank Henderson—the sole volunteer who has volunteered with the Monterey County Probation Department Youth Center’s bicycling education program for every session since its launch in April 2012.

We also send much gratitude to Luciano Rodriguez, a faithful Youth Center bike ed volunteer from July 2012 until taking a leave of absence in November 2018. He’ll be back!

Thanks to all individuals or businesses who have contributed supplies or volunteered with the Youth Center bike ed program since Bicycling Monterey launched the program in April 2012. To see who they are, scroll to section 11, items #1, 2, 4, 7, 9 of “Youth Center – first high school bike tech class in Monterey County!”

If you’d like to know more about the Youth Center bike ed program—or any Bicycling Monterey projects—please phone Bicycling Monterey.

Bike Nights 2020

Contribute gifts for the boys!

Due to the coronavirus threat, Youth Center boys (just like the general public) can be expected to be washing their hands more frequently. That can quickly result in cracked, dry hands! Please contribute hand lotions, which must be in a clear container. 
Other appreciated items include the following.
  • Other toiletries (must also be in clear container)
  • Jigsaw puzzles
  • Yarn for knitting
  • Paperback books (nonviolent, positive content)
Note: No red or blue items, and no sports team insignia.
Your name will be added to the Bicycling Monterey website’s list of contributors of project supplies (unless you ask to be listed as Anonymous).
Thank you! Questions? Phone Bicycling Monterey.

Be a Bike Night presenter 

Background check required. Phone Bicycling Monterey to learn more.
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The post below was previously published on April 15, 2019.

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This post was published on 7 November 2019. One or more changes last made to this post on 11 March 2020.

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