Bicycles offer more than an alternative mode of transportation, they are a source of entertainment, sport and technical skill. The Kalihi Valley Instructional Bike Exchange (KVIBE) in Honolulu is taking this message to the "at risk" youth of Kalihi, through an earn-a-bike community program designed to promote health, active living and teach vocational skills through some good old hands-on sweat equity.
The Hub, as the bike shop is called, has an open-door policy where anyone can come down and work on a bike to call their own. Participants can fix up the ride they already have or grab a donated bike, spend some time working on it and when they are done the bike is theirs to keep. Kids can also come down and volunteer a few hours of their time helping out in the shop†cleaning, working in the shop, helping others fix their bikes†and earn a bicycle for their time.
"I'd like to see more of the kids in the community being responsible for their own product, not just throwing a bike out when it's broken," explains KVIBE Department Coordinator and Founder Chris Blumenstetter. "Fix what you have, upgrade it and make it nicer†a lot of kids have a disposable mentality and we teach them to take care of their own equipment."
The non-profit has been a fixture in the Kalihi community for six years promoting bike safety and keeping kids tuned in to healthy activities, helping them reap the rewards of working toward a goal, one set of wheels at a time.
Grab a wrench, The Hub is open:
Tuesday - Friday: 10:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Saturday: 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Donate a bike at:
The Hub - KVIBE
1638 Kamehameha IV Road
Honolulu, HI 96819