Bikes Not Bombs November Update

Written by Boston Biker on Nov 07

Presentation: Amuru, Uganda: Lessons from the field

Akot Rose is the vice chair of the volunteer Village Health Team, and she is one of 10 from the team who now have advanced training in bicycle mechanics to rebuild and maintain bikes as transportation for 350 health workers in Uganda. Come out to Thursday’s presentation to learn more! Photo by Omar Bhimji.

Join BNB for a presentation and report-back from our latest international project working with Village Health Workers in post-conflict Northern Uganda! The event will be Thursday November 8th at 7pm, at the BNB Hub.

Presenters will be:

  • Omar Bhimji, the BNB Fieldworker who lived for eight months in Amuru, Northern Uganda, to develop this project on the ground.
  • Miguel Gothers-Reyes, BNB Bike Shop Mechanic who visited Amuru for 2 months to prototype and assess the viability of bicycle ambulances in this project.
  • David Branigan, BNB International Programs Director, will provide current project updates and BNB’s plans for ongoing project development to support post-conflict renewal in Northern Uganda.

In December 2011, BNB loaded and shipped our first container of bikes, parts and tools to the Village Health Workers of Amuru, Northern Uganda. Omar worked with the health workers to set-up a professional bicycle repair workshop in Amuru, lay the foundations for 7 village-based repair workstations, train Village Health Workers in basic and advanced mechanics and build their capacity to collectively manage the project going forward, with the help of Odoch Mark the current Project Coordinator. Come to the event to find out more!

Learn more and RSVP to this event here!RSVPs are encouraged, but not required.

You’re invited to Earn-A-Bike graduation

Eddie (right) will be graduating Thursday, with the help of teachers like Jesus Volquez (left) an Earn-A-Bike grad himself who is now the Earn-A-Bike Coordinator as a Youth Employee. Come out and celebrate Eddie and his classmates’ achievements!

Thursday November 15th, 6-7pm

Everyone is invited to come celebrate the end of the last Earn-A-Bike session of 2012! Graduates will present on what they’ve learned, show off their newly completely bikes, and display a slide show from the program. The graduation is a time to celebrate these young mechanics, as well as the youth instructors and adult volunteers who helped them along the way. Graduation is potluck, so please consider bringing something for everyone to share. Contact Elijah at [email protected] or 617-522-0222 x101

Check out the awesome new video about BNB

A huge thanks to BNB volunteer Sarah Gay for making this awesome new videoabout BNB’s programs. If you’ve ever wanted to hear directly from our program participants, both in Boston, and around the world, this is a must-watch. Please consider sharing it with others, and again, thanks to Sarah Gay for her great work!

Joining the Monthly Sustainer Club just got easier!

Bikes Not Bombs is pleased to announce that we now can now set up monthly, recurring credit card donations to support our work through our new on-line credit card processor! Simply go to our website and click Donate Now, choose “I want to contribute this amount every month” and indicate the number of monthly donations you’d like to make. Bikes Not Bombs is proud to be supported by the grassroots efforts of people like you. Each and every contribution is essential to the success of our work. This is what Bikes Not Bombs has been built on since 1984—people coming together to support something they truly believe in. By becoming a member of the Monthly Sustainer Club you will provide BNB with a source of stable and dependable funding to support our programs using the bicycle as a vehicle for social change in Boston and around the world. Thanks to all of the current members of the Monthly Sustainer Club! Contact Jodi Sugerman-Brozan at [email protected] bikesnotbombs.orgif you are a current member and would like to start using the new system, or if you’d like to join and have any questions.

Bikes Not Bombs on Twitter and Facebook!

Bikes Not Bombs is active on social media, and we’d like to connect with you! Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

Winter overhauls and gear, free commuting clinic at the BNB Bike Shop

Winter Overhaul Special
The BNB Bike Shop winter overhaul special starts November 1st and goes all winter through the end of February. For $120 plus parts ($30 savings) we adjust everything on the bike, repack all the bearings and lubricate every moving part. An overhaul is a great idea whether you’re planning on packing your bike away soon and want to make sure it’s ready to ride for the spring or if you’re a year round commuter worried about the toll that snow and road salt can take on a bike. Like last year getting a winter overhaul enters your name in a raffle to win some neat prizes. Bring your bike by to get an estimate and find out if an overhaul would be appropriate for your bike.

Winter Bike Commuting – free clinic
Thursday November 15th from 8-9pm we’ll be offering a free clinic on Bike Commuting through the winter in Boston. The clinic will cover bike accessories to consider, different clothing options, and winter specific maintenance issues. Clinics start promptly at 8pm and may be cancelled due to low attendance–please show up on time.

Winter Gear!
Come by to check out our winter gear! We have a great selection of gloves, cycling caps including balaclavas, reflective gear, and studded tires. A shop favorite is the Giro 100 Proof, which is a three-finger design that balances the warmth of a mitten with the dexterity of a traditional five-finger glove. It also comes with a separate merino wool liner which can be worn on it’s own making this a glove that’ll work from early fall to the dead of winter.

Closed on Sundays
We’ll be closed Sundays starting in November but still open our normal hours Monday through Saturday including Wednesdays from 8am-9pm for any same day service needs. In November we’ll also be closed Saturday the 17th and Thursday the 22nd.

Phone-A-Thon volunteers needed

Do you love Bikes Not Bombs and want to help raise money to support BNB’s work in Boston and overseas? Then we want you to volunteer for Phone-A-Thon!

We need about 30 amazing volunteers to call BNB donors to inform them of the great things going on at BNB and ask them to make a year-end donation. We’re hoping to raise $35,000 this year and we need your help to get there! Every caller makes a difference!

We have 10 calling sessions scheduled between November 20th and December 22nd. Volunteers can sign up for one or more sessions. All sessions will be held at the Brewery Complex in Jamaica Plain, either at the BNB Hub or at the Institute for Policy Studies, Building L. Snacks will be provided and you’ll earn volunteer credits for your time.

Fill out a brief online form to sign up to volunteer!

If you have any questions, please contact Kenny Simms or Jodi Sugerman-Brozan at 617-522-0222. Thank you!!

Help BNB load our 50,000th bike! Container loading to Ability Bikes Cooperative in Ghana on Saturday, December 1st

Mirriam works as a mechanic at Ability Bikes. Meet Mirriam and learn more about this BNB partner in video.

Join Bikes Not Bombs to celebrate 28 years of recycling bicycles and international solidarity on this historic container loading to Ability Bikes Cooperative in Ghana!

Ability Bikes Cooperative is a worker-owned bike shop run by physically challenged people in Koforidua, Ghana. BNB helped establish Ability Bikes in 2008, and since then, Ability Bikes has operated independently importing about 4 containers of bikes per year, repairing the bikes and selling them from their retail store to provide needed mobility to 2,000 people in Ghana per year.

All of the members of Ability Bikes Cooperative are physically challenged and “mobility challenged,” yet on a daily basis they run a business that provides increased mobility to able-bodied people. Ability Bikes recently hired a new staff-person Bridget Nartey, making 7 members of Ability Bikes Cooperative with full-time employment. Bridget is heading-up bike sales at their new location in the main Koforidua market. BNB continues to support Ability Bikes in their growth and development, and continues to be inspired by their success.

Help BNB load bikes! – Visit our website for more information.

TIME: Saturday December 1st from 10am to 5pm. Drop in for an hour or stay all day!
PLACE: The BNB warehouse at 10 Harvard Street in Dorchester
DETAILS: Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Equal Exchange coffee is generously donated by City Feed & Supply! RSVP for this event here!

Arlington bike collection day

On Saturday, November 17th, you can donate you old bikes, parts, and accessories for Bikes Not Bombs, in the Arlington Town Yard at 51 Grove Street, from 9am to 1pm. Donations are tax deductible, we can give you a receipt, and your donations are very valuable to BNB’s international and youth programs!

A Bike Drive is an event, often organized by a volunteer, to collect bicycles for Bikes Not Bombs. Large drives will sometime bring in over 200 bikes! These drives help us extend our network of bike collection beyond our two locations in Jamaica Plain. If you have a bike to donate, you can always bring it to Jamaica Plain, but if you live near Arlington this can be more convenient for you, and we’ll have a new schedule of Bike Drive locations in 2013 on our website soon.

Info online about donating bikes.

Want to help bring Bikes Not Bombs’ bike collection to your town? We’d love to have your help to Organize a bike drive!

Bikes Not Bombs’ second annual Building Momentum Breakfast a success!

Matthew Rosen (right), BNB Board Member, was a table captain to invite friends to the breakfast.

Almost 80 people attended Bikes Not Bombs’ second annual Building Momentum Breakfast on Wednesday, October 24 at Space with a Soul Loft on Summer Street in downtown Boston. Guests enjoyed a delicious breakfast donated by our friends at Ula Café and Barrington Coffee and heard from Bikes Not Bombs leaders, such as Neil Leifer, a devoted volunteer and donor, our own Elijah Evans (Director of Youth Programs) who emceed the event, and Executive Director Jodi Sugerman-Brozan. Guests also heard inspiring stories from individuals who have been impacted by our work, such as BNB youth employee and Program Associate for Chain Reaction, Stephane Alexandre. Stephane shared, “I have just a few months left at Bikes Not Bombs before I leave for college and I am speechless at how far I have come. When I walked in that first day I was a long way from home, not my house in Mattapan, but Haiti, where I was born and lived for a decade. As I stand here today, I know I have another real home, and that is Bikes Not Bombs. In this home I have proven to the world and to myself that girls can do mechanics. I am involved in sustainability issues and I actually know concrete ways to make change happen. In this home I have rallied for youth employment, transit justice, and peace. I have helped ship bikes to Ghana, and even donated my own bike to a shipment to the Caribbean. In this home I have inspired my peers and those around me to use bikes for good.” Read more online.

Tool Time: Work on your own bike!

The next Tool Time will be November 15th, and future dates are announced on the BNB website (see below).

Tool Time is a time for BNB youth programs graduates, members, and volunteers to come through and use our Hub mechanics space for working on your own bike. To attend a session, please rsvp to Jeremy ([email protected]; 617-522-0222 x109) with at least 24 hours notice so we can make sure we have enough space.

See more info and upcoming Tool Time dates online.

Youth Employee of the Month is Kevin

Kevin Mirville is a first time Youth Instructor, but you wouldn’t know it from watching him. He volunteers for any task that needs to be done, and steps up to take leadership opportunities whenever he can. Kevin also lives BNB’s mission every day; from biking around his neighborhood to staying late at the Hub to do mechanics, he is a true ambassador of BNB. Kevin was nominated for this award by his peers, proof of the contribution he is making to the Youth Employee team.

Save the date for Bike-A-Thon 2013!

Photo by Jasmine Laietmark

Save the date! Bike-A-Thon 2013 to be Sunday June 2nd

First time riders, long-term supporters, volunteers, and curious community members alike are welcomed to take part in the fun rides, fanfare, celebration and community-building of Bikes Not Bombs’ biggest event and fundraiser of the year, the Bike-A-Thon! In 2013 we look to have our greatest rides yet, so don’t miss out. Put Sunday, June 2nd in your calendar today! Also, don’t forget to hold June 23rd as a rain date just in case. We’ll be coming out with more details as we get closer to the event, but you can be sure that we’ll have:

Fully-supported rides for all skill levels!
Delicious food and a post-ride celebration for riders!
Brand new BNB t-shirts for all participants!
Great prizes for top fundraisers!

See more info and photos from the 2012 Bike-A-Thon!

News outside of BNB:

Add Your Voice to MassDOT’s Statewide Conversation

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is holding a series of public meetings all over the Commonwealth in the run up to creating their long range financing plan. This plan is going to dictate whether we continue on the 20th-century path of building ever more roads and bridges, or if we are going to invest in a balanced, multi-modal system. Cyclists, transit riders, and pedestrians are especially encouraged to attend at a hearing and express their support for improved and safety-enhancing infrastructure! For more information, contact Jeremy at [email protected].

War and Peace Films in Billerica

In recognition of Veterans Day, the Billerica First Parish Social Justice Cte., in collaboration with local members of Veterans for Peace, is hosting free film screenings of thought-provoking films at 7pm each evening. “Why We Fight” 11/7, “Sir, No Sir” 11/8, “The Good Soldier” 11/9, “The Ground Truth” 11/10, “The Welcome” 11/10. At Billerica First Parish UU Church, 7 Concord Road (on the common). More info- 978-663-2293.

Lucy Parsons Book-Swap, Sale and Party

Sunday Nov 11th, 1pm through 10 pm or later. The Lucy Parsons radical bookstore is celebrating a 1 year anniversary of the new location in Jamaica Plain. 20% off purchases all day, and book-swap and party starting around 7. Bring some of your favorite books, and leave with some of someone else’s favorite books. 358A Centre Street in Jackson Square, Jamaica Plain, 617-522-6098, [email protected],

Hurricane Sandy, Climate Change, Big Oil, and Nov. 15 in Boston

Our thoughts go out to everyone who has suffered from Hurricane Sandy. We were heartened to hear that our sister organization in NYC, Recycle A Bicycle, suffered some flooding but was able to quickly reopen with minimal damage. The issue of climate change has until now been largely ignored by our political leaders, but we are hearing that climate change positively played a role in making this storm worse than it otherwise would have been, from sources ranging from the National Center for Atmospheric Research, Scientific American, the Guardian, Discovery News and more. New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo declared “climate change is a reality. Extreme weather is a reality. It is a reality that we are vulnerable.” At the same time, reminds us that Exxon and Shell announced that they made $16 billion in profit during the last quarter alone. “Big Oil makes record profits because it can pollute for free. That pollution causes climate change. … fossil fuel companies are spending millions to make sure our politicians won’t address the climate crisis.” has created a petition to tell Big Oil to instead spend this money on hurricane relief efforts. You can also join the 350 Massachusetts organizing group to help build campaigns and actions. And on November 15th, you can attend‘s Do the Math tour at the Orpheum Theater in Boston with Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein to help build the movement to end climate silence and solve the climate crisis! Also pass the word to friends around the country to attend when the tour hits their cities.

Death of a Nation: the Timor Conspiracy

Thursday, November 15, the free UPandOUT film series presents films documenting the US-backed Indonesian invasion of East Timor, which began in 1975 and in the following two decades killed an estimated 200,000 East Timorese – 1/3 of the population. Death of a Nation by John Pilger will be joined by a short film from 1991 by Amy Goodman and Allan Nairn. Western defense ministers claimed ignorance, and the US media blackout on the issue was one of the major studies of Noam Chomsky’s film Manufacturing Consent. In 2005, declassified cables confirmed US complicity, and the CIA described the death toll as “one of the worst mass-murders of the 20th century.” Yet in 2012, Barack Obama renewed arms sales to Indonesia; and in 2010 had reversed a 12-year-old ban on training an elite unit of the Indonesian military — the murderous Kopassus. Doors open 6:40; film starts promptly 7pm, 243 Broadway, Cambridge – corner of Broadway and Windsor, entrance on Windsor.

Noam Chomsky and Angela Davis Speak

For the first time ever in conversation, Angela Davis and Noam Chomsky will be speaking at a community forum on Saturday, December 8th. Moderated by Vijay Prashad, the topic of the discussion will be Radical Futures and Prospects for Freedom. Time and location will be announced once confirmed. Contact 617-822-3075 or [email protected] and see the Facebook event. This event is brought to you by Critical Resistance, with the City School and Black and Pink, along with Alternatives for Community and Environment, Beantown Society, Boston-area Youth Organizing Project, Project HIP-HOP and Reflect and Strengthen.

Livable Streets hiring Campaign Coordinator

Livable Streets is a Boston-based non-profit organization that challenges people, government, and businesses to think differently about the role of transportation in our daily lives. Their work seeks to create a healthy, people-centered balance of walking, biking, public transit, and automobiles. Bikes Not Bombs and Livable Streets often collaborate and support each others’ work. See the job postingonline.

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