On Wednesday, May 18, second grade students at Stevens Elementary started summer early by taking home a brand new bike and bike helmet, custom fit to them!
Local nonprofit Wish for Wheels, founded in 2004 by Brad Appel, treated approximately 50 second graders to new “Stevens blue” Huffy bikes. Each student got to choose a bike, then work with a volunteer to find the right seat and handlebar size, and finally get a new helmet fit to their head.
“I share a bike with my brother, and now I have my own!” said one particularly excited student.
Wish for Wheels is founded on the principles that a new bike can help kids gain freedom and independence and enjoy the success that comes from learning to ride a bike. Their mission includes giving students bikes as vehicles for wellness, tools for building community, and a new way to get to school – hopefully increasing student attendance. They partner with schools all over the country in low-income communities to provide second graders a brand new bike and helmet, and some quick bike safety tips. World-famous cyclist Lance Armstrong even sits on its board of directors. Wish for Wheels has already given away over 50,000 bikes to deserving students, including those at Stevens!
Students were so excited to receive their new bikes, and the look on their faces when they entered the room was magical. For some of the students, this was their first experience with a bike, and the volunteers took extra time to walk them through the parts and pieces of the bike, even giving some students a private lesson on how to ride. One of the volunteers was the parent of a fourth grader, and he was excited to be able to give back and share his love of biking with the younger students. Wish for Wheels went above and beyond to make sure all students had a great time and felt deserving of such a wonderful gift. In return, students demonstrated gratitude and happiness that made everyone smile! The next day, at least five students rode their bikes to school!
Stevens Elementary is proud to collaborate with our community partners in Wheat Ridge and surrounding areas. Our students and staff love connecting with organizations that bring our great community together. There are countless opportunities to partner with Stevens students and families, and we welcome all volunteers and visitors. Check us out on Facebook and Instagram for all our fun happenings!
To learn more about Wish for Wheels, visit wishforwheels.org.
Kristina McCombie is an ASD Special Education Teacher at Stevens Elementary.