A Footscray Rotary project helping disadvantaged people get their own set of wheels is on a roll.

The Footscray Community Bike Shed was launched on Saturday with an open day for volunteers.

Rotary club secretary Rodney Johnstone said people were being encouraged to donate any bikes they may have sitting around in garages and sheds for the initiative, which is supported by Maribyrnong council.

“The bikes are then cleaned and repaired by volunteer bike mechanics and reissued to refugees, disadvantaged kids and people newly arrived in Australia via a range of local charities and support organisations,” he said.

“The project aims to get refugees and asylum seekers involved with local volunteers in helping to clean and repair the bikes so they mix in, make friends and feel they’re contributing to the local community.”

Mr Johnstone said the scheme also provided adults and children with transport or recreation when they may not be able to afford it.

About 30 bicycles have already been donated to the scheme, but more are needed.

The community bike shed is located at the former Maribyrnong council depot in Mills Close, between Victoria University and Footscray Gardens.

Volunteers are needed to help out for an hour or two from 11am to 3pm on Saturdays.

For more details, phone 0417 350 890.