Across the United States, cycling has been growing, not just as a hobby, but also as a practical means of transportation. We think this is a positive trend. Cycling is not just a fun and healthy way for the advantaged to get around our cities, but a potential equalizer for low-income and isolated communities.
Our nonprofit partner, the Community Cycling Center in Portland, Oregon has taught us at Modern Kids Design just how influential this growing biking trend could be in providing greater access to jobs and education. They have just celebrated their 20th anniversary as a nonprofit bike shop. Over the past two decades, the Community Cycling Center has provided over 7,500 bicycles to low-income families, empowering parents to take control of their commutes, so that they can spend much-needed money on healthy food and safe shelter instead of gas and car maintenance.
It’s estimated that currently, the poorest families in the U.S. spend the greatest portion of their income on transportation—almost 40 percent of their paychecks. If cycling spread across the nation as a viable transportation option, families struggling with finances could be better-equipped to budget incomes. If transportation were no longer a challenge for these families, they could also get to school and work without worrying about saving gas for essential trips. Short trips and running to extra-curricular activities for children would no longer be a serious financial strain. When every penny counts, slashing 40 percent of your budget might feel like a miracle. For the low-income families of Portland, the Community Cycling Center provides a way to tangibly improve their lives.
While we love cycling as a form of transportation for its health benefits and for the environmental impact, it is important to remember that cycling can directly address personal financial concerns. Modern Kids Design encourages you to keep this in mind the next time you shop with us and Shop for a Cause. Consider choosing the Community Cycling Center as a beneficiary if, like us, you believe that cycling can change lives. As always, thanks for reading and feel free to reach out by email. We appreciate hearing your thoughts and suggestions for future posts.