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Saturday, July 7, 2012

Bikes are Back 2012 - Gearing Up Early This Year - Bike Lady


Dear Friends of the Bike Lady,

From my home to yours, I hope you enjoyed your 4th of July holiday! It’s the season of freedom, independence and the pursuit of happiness. For most kids, that’s exactly what a bike provides them year in and year out. Think back and try to imagine your childhood summers without a bike. The holidays are months away, but we’re already gearing up for 2012 and this your official invitation to once again be a Friend of the Bike Lady!

For four years, I have asked you to join me in donating bicycles to the winter “Holiday Wish” program benefiting local kids under the care of Franklin County Children Services (FCCS). To date, your generosity has created immense holiday magic and you’ve given a new bike, helmet and lock to 1,211 children with a history of abuse, neglect and abandonment. Your annual support is truly amazing and I thank you. We’re doing things a little differently this year and starting earlier.

We have wanted to purchase unassembled bikes for a number of years. We believe we’ll get more bike for the buck and be able to serve more kids. Warehouse space, timing of donations and volunteers to assemble have always been obstacles. This will be a test year and all donations received by September will be used to purchase unassembled bikes direct from Huffy. The bikes will be delivered to Pickaway Correctional Institute in Orient, Ohio to be assembled by inmates. I’m excited about this partnership. Funds received after September will be used for helmets, locks and additional bikes purchased retail.

New kids enter the system every day and you don’t come under the care of FCCS unless you’ve experienced unfathomable trauma, astounding poverty or are completely alone without a single relative to care for you. We’ve learned in the past four years that bikes truly change these young lives and what these children receive from FCCS Holiday Wish is often their only holiday gift. Seeing a new bike under the tree brings tears of joy, squeals of delight and hours upon hours of riding joy. And, it’s a positive lifelong memory – something in short supply for these kids. Surely you remember your first bike!

You make Bike Lady come to life each year. Your participation – through individual donations, organizing church and corporate giving and spreading the word – is the sprinkling of fairy dust needed to create this holiday magic. Our 2012 goal is 750 bikes. The intent is to provide FCCS at least 500 bikes and spread the joy to kids under the care of child welfare agencies in Delaware, Fairfield, Licking, Madison, Pickaway and Union and counties, too. It will take about $75,000 and that’s a long haul in such a tough economy with so many struggling financially. We can do it if you help.

Spread the word, follow the progress at Bike Lady Inc. on Facebook, forward this email and, of course, donate today:
·          Donate online at www.bikelady.org
·          Or mail a check payable to Bike Lady, Inc., PO Box 311, Blacklick, OH 43004
·          Or select and purchase a bike, helmet and lock, then drop them off at FCCS Holiday Wish Santa's Workshop at 855 W. Mound Street, M-F, 8-5 – only during the holiday season.
Bike Lady Inc is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt charity. Your donation is tax deductible per IRS guidelines. EVERY dollar goes directly to the purchase of bikes, helmets and locks. We’re already rolling. Please join us. Truly, no donation is too small. I ask that if you have a little to share, could you give a kid a bike? You’ll change their life.

Forever grateful,

Kate Koch Gatch | Executive Director | Bike Lady, Inc.
PO Box 311 Blacklick | OH 43004 |T: 614.946.6463
Email: staff@bikelady.org | Web: www.bikelady.org | Facebook: Bike Lady Inc.

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