NewsUplifting Arizona


Bike drive bringing thousands of bikes to kids, families in need

Bike donations - ABC15.png
Posted at 6:20 PM, Nov 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-12 20:20:29-05

PHOENIX — ABC15 viewers are stepping up big for the holidays already! As part of our second-hand bike drive partnering with Earnhardt Ford and Saint Vincent De Paul, thousands of bikes will soon find some very grateful owners. Before they end up in the hands of people who need them though, the bikes are carefully inspected by Frank Villegas.

“I make sure there’s no flats on it,” said Villegas. “Make sure all the gears work, the pedals, nothing loose, you know, the brakes.”

If he finds any problems, he goes to work. It’s at times a tedious task repeated over and over but worth every second by the moment he enjoyed today.

“It’s a pretty hard choice? Well take your time, take your time, get whatever you want,” said Villegas to 12-year-old Jose Acosta.

Inside Saint Vincent De Paul Friday, Jose and his sister Leilani Arizenzi are getting an early Christmas present from the community.

“I’m looking at that blue one right there,” said Jose with excitement. “It’s my favorite color.”

“It’s a beach cruiser so I’ve always wanted one since I was a little girl,” said Leilani.

It’s all part of the Second Chance Bike Drive that netted more than 1,200 used bicycles, soon to be donated to our underserved but extremely deserving neighbors.

“The generosity in the Valley is just amazing,” said Cindy Bernardo with Saint Vincent De Paul.

She says these free bicycles are crucial tools of transportation for many of the families they serve.

“A bike can mean the difference to dad getting to work and back, a trip to the grocery store that is impossible otherwise, the kids getting to school safely,” said Bernardo.

Jose and Leilani got the first two bikes after writing a letter about what it would mean to them.

“It means a lot to me, I am very thankful at how this organization has helped us out a lot,” said Leilani who has also received tutoring for school at Saint Vincent De Paul.

“I feel very appreciated because some people take their time to give us these things,” said Jose. “I plan to ride it all day.”

Within weeks, hundreds more will roll out the door, all thanks to you, our viewers.

If anyone is still interested in donating, click here.