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Donations

Donors GaveBIG

Kristin Kinnamon, Board President

Like so many small businesses and nonprofits, our finances were looking a bit shaky early this spring. The shop was closed for three weeks as we considered how to safely operate in COVID times. Even when the shop reopened, COVID had canceled classes and events like the Kids Bike Swap. Our bank account dropped $12,000 as expenses exceeded revenue. The Sharing Wheels Board took a deep breath.

That’s when many of you stepped up to GiveBIG. Thanks to matching contributions and 40 donors who gave from $20 to $1,000, we raised $8,511 during the statewide campaign. Another $2,200 came in the month following GiveBIG.

Your support bought helmets and new bike parts for our Kids Bike Giveaway program (see related article). It lets us loan tools for free to low income customers. We’re restarting classes – smaller for COVID reasons – without having to worry about the “break-even” point.

Even though bike shops have been considered “essential businesses” by the state and allowed to remain open (because bikes are transportation, not just toys), it’s been a difficult time. Knowing that you, too, think our work is essential has been a big boost – not just to the bank account, but also to our spirits.

Our board is fully committed to our mission – using bikes as vehicles for empowerment, affordability, sustainability and education. Thank you so much for supporting that vision.

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Used Bikes for Sale Volunteers

Sharing the Road with New Cyclist

Christy Cowley, Executive Director

Keeping people and bikes moving is what we do, and WOW we certainly have done it well this past month! As most everyone has noticed, there is no shortage of new and returning cyclists on our roads and trails. It is wonderful to see so many people enjoying their bikes for transportation and recreational activities. In May and June we saw record sales numbers with 81 bikes sold at an average price of $183 — keeping true to our mission of offering affordable bikes for everyone.

The Sharing Wheels staff/volunteers are having a great time helping people get introduced and/or reacquainted with the sport of cycling. Any idea what the best part of having all these new cyclists in our area could be? Most of them likely drive cars and may now have a newfound respect for the challenge and courage it sometimes takes to ride a bike on a shared road. When drivers become cyclists, it makes it safer for all of us to coexist. Perhaps less road rage? I’m hopeful.

Though our supply of bikes is shrinking, we still have many in our inventory and plenty of parts and gear to keep bikes rolling. Trying to keep up with demand has been a challenge, so PLEASE, think of Sharing Wheels if you have an adult bike in good condition that is not in use. Your donation helps us build a biking community, provide education and deliver the programs that benefit our low- and no-income residents. We are accepting donations of lightly-used, good quality bikes during shop open hours – if you’re not sure your bike is good enough for a new owner, email us a photo first.  Keep riding and sharing the road with a smile on your face. Even if that smile is hidden behind a mask, it can still brighten someone’s day.

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News

Donations make a difference

By Kristin Kinnamon, Board President

With a budget of under $100,000, donations both large and small make a big difference for Sharing Wheels Community Bike Shop. And we put that money to good use.

We served approximately 1,750  people this past year. Maybe you came in to fix your own bike with our tools? Or perhaps you bought a used part and got some free advice to go with it? Others donated a bike so someone else could ride.

That’s what Sharing Wheels Community Bike Shop is all about. We keep people and bikes moving.

You can make a difference for a small nonprofit. Our goal is 100 donors, at any amount. With so many of our customers living in poverty, it’s especially important for those of us with a little extra to contribute financially – for ourselves, and for those who can’t.

Your support will help us though a time of change. We’ve just hired our first executive director, Christy Cowley. The job is part-time, with the goal of improving our programs and effectiveness. Josh Pfister, our first paid shop staff, recently moved on to a Seattle bike shop opportunity after 3 years with us. We continue to look for a full-time shop manager.

We remain committed to our mission of empowerment, affordability, sustainability and education. Learn more about our goals for 2020 and see our new shop layout at our Holiday Open House on Dec. 12.

Thanks for supporting Sharing Wheels.

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News Volunteers

Support Your Local Teenager: Us

There are more than 1.4 million nonprofit organizations in the U.S. Starting a nonprofit is relatively easy: see a need in your community, round up some dedicated volunteers, file the paperwork.

When Sharing Wheels Community Bike Shop started in 2002, we were the only nonprofit bike shop in Snohomish County, committed to “connecting unused bikes to people who need wheels.”

We still serve that unique need. As a teenaged organization, we have matured in so many ways, but still need to grow up in others. One way we need to grow is in community support.

Donations from individuals like you are essential for the future of Sharing Wheels Community Bike Shop.  Whether you give $25 or $250, your contribution demonstrates that the community supports our shop and our mission.

Of course, our bike shop is full of bikes and parts donated by community supporters – probably too full, but loving bikes is an occupational hazard for us. Luckily, bike sales have tripled in recent years – some customers come in to find a special bike and to support our mission, while other customers are the mission:

  • The 125 low income kids who will take a bike home for Christmas this month
  • Sally, who worked her way out of homelessness by using her bike to get to work at odd hours when buses don’t run;
  • Matt, the recovering addict who needed to fix his flat tire so he could ride to treatment
  • Jesse, who got a “new-to-him” road bike from Sharing Wheels and has lost 60 pounds riding everywhere with his caregiver

We know many customers by name because as a community bike shop, we don’t just sell bikes. We see people again and again. You drop by to borrow our tools, get a used part, or when to volunteer and pay forward the help we have given you.

Many of our services are free, but our rent, insurance, taxes, and staff are not. As we’ve grown, so has the cost and complexity of doing business.

Many nonprofits don’t make it to age 16. We are determined to keep serving the greater Everett area into adulthood. In 2019 we’ll be adopting a business plan and looking to expand our bike programs and partnerships. Your donation will help us grow up.

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News

Donations Keep Shop Open for All

14468704_1122457334456029_4224439738060814926_oIn 2002, Sharing Wheels began life providing basic bike services at the Everett Gospel Mission, while giving neighborhood kids (big and small) a place to hang-out, get greasy, and share bike love.

That same passion for bicycles and for helping others use bikes is what sustains us as a community bike shop today. This past year, about 85% of our customers were low income people. We hosted our 15th annual Kids Bike Swap and donated 100 refurbished kids bikes to Christmas House. We’ve expanded weekend hours and increased sales by 50%. Our shop is full of both basic and unique bikes* and tools and parts to fix the bike you love.

Our nonprofit board meets monthly. We dream of a bigger shop, more classes, and more programs for people who ride bikes – out of love, necessity, or both. We are working to expand our presence and impact in the greater Everett community.

Donate Button

In this season of giving, we ask each of you to consider a financial donation to Sharing Wheels at a level that is meaningful to you. One generous volunteer has already donated $500. Two of our board members have also committed $500 each – but they will double their donations if we can raise $1,000 match from you, our community of supporters.

Our shop is invaluable to many, and there’s a price for free access to tools, hands-on help, and the space we rent to hold all those wonderful bike things.

Did you fix a flat at the shop this year? Borrow our tools? Find the right screw or specialized part? Are you glad someone else was able to get a low-cost bike or used part?

With so many of our customers living in poverty, it’s especially important for those of us with a little extra to contribute – for ourselves, and for those who can’t.

We are a 501(c)3 charitable nonproft. You can donate now via PayPal on your credit card, or come by the shop with cash, check, or credit. Send checks to Sharing Wheels, 2531 Broadway, Everett WA 98201.

* Come buy a bike: We have a recumbent bike that needs TLC, bikes from Spain, Italy, Britain, Japan, and France, and lots more.

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Home Page Post

Kids Bike Repair Parties

kids bikes4-9 p.m. Tuesdays

The Kids Bike Swap is made possible only by the work of our amazing volunteers. Join us for a repair party every Tuesday night through June 7.

All mechanical abilities are welcome. A willingness to learn and get greasy is all you need. Drop-in for an hour or two during a repair party, or anytime during open hours.

We also need donations of gently-used kids bikes for the Kids Bike Swap. Check your garage, talk to some neighbors, post on social media – then bring your donations by any time we are open.

4-9 p.m. Tuesdays at the bike shop, 2531 Broadway, Everett, WA. Entrance at the back.