The wheels of community spirit are turning at the Inner West Community Bike Hub.
Formed as a one-off Refugee Week project by the Rotary Club of Footscray in 2014, with the aim of providing recycled bikes for refugees living in Maribyrnong, the not-for-profit organisation has been rolling along for the past five years.
After running “on the smell of an oily rag” at the former Maribyrnong council depot in Mills Close near Footscray Park, donating more than 650 bikes to refugees along the way, the hub has a brand new home on Moreland Street thanks to a state government grant via the Pick My Project initiative.
Hub president Rodney Johnstone said the new location enables the hub to continue its core program of repairing and restoring bikes to donate to refugees and others in need, while expanding its offerings in new directions.
“It’s just gone from strength to strength over time, thanks to a small band of volunteers,” he said.
“The idea with the new location is we will still run our program on Saturdays as well as looking from Monday to Friday to offer bike servicing and repairs.”
Money raised from bike servicing will be used to help expand social programs such as the bike donations and working with schools on increasing bike safety and education.
Mr Johnstone said the wider community can assist by donating unused bikes, getting their bikes serviced via the hub, or volunteering their time if they have appropriate skills.
The hub is also offering a $10 memberships.
The grand opening will be held from 10.30am Saturday, August 31 at 38-40 Moreland Street, Footscray.