The Big Bicycle Challenge
Students had a long list of ideas for their Do Good December project, each of them worth pursuing. But it was the desire to make an immediate impact in their own community that won out.
G.W. Carver High School sits in an area of the city that is rebuilding. The community is focused on getting children and families back outside to play. What better way than on a bicycle?
Enter Ms. Fluellen, Carver High School’s Head Custodian. She lost her son to violence a few years ago. The Center is in his name — the Michael Fluellen Recreation Center. When she heard about what students were planning, Ms. Fluellen became an advocate for the project, helping bridge the relationship between the school and the Center. She even donated 10 bicycles herself.
“Ms. Fluellen was instrumental in making this project come to life,” said program Facilitator, Meticho O’Neal. “She does so much work in the community, and has been an absolute inspiration to the students.”
By partnering with the Junior ROTC Department at Carver, students were able to extend their reach even further. Together, they broke into teams, doing all of the heavy lifting and logistical work that it takes to pull together 100 bicycles. And it was a lot. There were meetings, flyers, donations, popcorn and candy sales, bike purchases, community outreach, collecting donated bikes, speeches, and countless deliveries to the Rec Center until the big day came.
“It was completely overwhelming,” said Ms. O’Neal. Bikes were lined up by age and size, and in just a few hours every single bike was given away. “We came into this project knowing we wanted to make an impact right here in our community. But we couldn’t have imagined it would be this big. I am so proud of these students.”