To kick off Bike Month, we have some excellent news to share.
This year, the League of Michigan Bicyclists was able to bring back our Micro-Grant Program after two years when we were unable to fund it due to the pandemic. We get to again lift up local bike groups across the state that are encouraging bicycling in their communities. It’s our mission to improve life through bicycling, and while we work hard to do that at the state level, we love to work with nonprofits, cycling clubs, libraries, bike shops, and anyone who is making a difference at a local level.
After receiving many strong applications, we had to make some difficult decisions. It wasn’t easy to narrow the field – thank you to everyone who put in the time and effort to apply. We awarded 12 organizations with grants ranging from $500 to $2,000 to further their missions and assist with projects. These organizations are offering programs across Michigan, and many of them are focused on groups that don’t always have access to cycling education like kids, women, and the LGBTQ community.
And the grantees are (drumroll please…)
- Top of Michigan Trails Council (Northern Lower Peninsula) – will provide trail signage that will educate all trail users on etiquette and safety
- Mid-Michigan Mountain Biking Association (Lansing, MI) – broke ground on their new Dirt School, a mountain bike skills park aimed at beginning riders and kids
- Free Bikes 4 Kidz Detroit (Detroit, MI) – will collect donated bikes and rehab them to give to kids in need
- Bike Friendly Kalamazoo (Kalamazoo area, MI) – will bring bikes and bike safety training to southwest Michigan kindergarten gym classes
- Cycle Re Cycle (Benton Harbor, MI) – will expose Benton Harbor kids and their families to safe bicycling on the Kal Haven Trail and provide bikes for each kid to use during the program
- PEAC (Southeastern MI) – will empower individuals with disabilities through cycling with their Summer Cycling Program
- Norte (Traverse City, MI) – The Norte Youth Leadership Council will provide community bike tune-ups to get more bikes rolling across Northern Michigan
- Back Alley Bikes (Detroit, MI) – will host workshops for women, non-binary, trans, and queer communities in Detroit, increasing ridership and knowledge of mechanical skills
- Open Roads Bike Program (Southwestern MI) – will donate 25 bicycles in 2022 to newly settled refugees in Kalamazoo County
- Kids Repair Program (Lansing, MI) – will refurbish donated bikes, offer free bike tune ups, and teach people how to repair their bikes
- Ecorse Public Library (Ecorse, MI) – will encourage bikeability and bike safety in the Downriver community with a new bike rack and programming
- Moving Milan Forward (Milan, MI) – will add bike fix-it stations and bike pumps to a local park for families and kids to use
Now, we’re trying something new this year: some grantees are leveraging their Micro-Grant award to conduct additional fundraising using LMB’s peer-to-peer platform. If one of the projects described above is near and dear to your heart, please learn more about them and consider chipping in.
We’re so inspired by all the great folks who applied that we’re ready to keep going. We want to do a second round of Micro-Grants in the fall, but we need your help to raise $15,000 to cover it. Celebrate the great organizations doing work throughout the state! Your generosity will help more local organizations make bicycling more accessible and get more people on bikes. And the first $5,000 in gifts to our Micro-Grant Fund will be matched dollar-for-dollar.
Would you consider a gift to our Micro-Grant Fund to support a fall round?
Thanks for all you do to make Michigan bicycling better!
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