Youth Bicycle Classes & Activites
Our Youth programs are rooted in the belief that young people thrive when they are valued, when they value themselves, and when they feel a sense of belonging. They are designed to engage youth in technical bike repair instruction and riding opportunities, which open doors to healthy development, active lifestyles, civic engagement, and environmental stewardship.
Bicycle Repair Classes (Earn-a-Bike)
This after-school program provides youth with opportunities to engage in hands-on learning activities that combine critical thinking, practical skills, teamwork and mentoring from caring adult instructors. During this 8-week class, youth learn the basics of bicycle repair, earn community service hours working on bikes, and also get to refurbish a bike for themselves to keep. This innovative program draws youth in with the promise of a bicycle, but results in so much more, as youth build confidence, strengthen social skills, and find a caring community. We offer these programs twice a week from September through June.
- Beginner Repair – learn about simple mechanics. You can earn a BMX bicycle with community service hours.
- Intermediate Repair – learn more difficult bike repair lessons on more complex bikes. You can earn a mountain bike with community service hours.
- Advanced Repair – hone skills to work in a bike shop or continue as a Bicycle Leader. When you graduate, you can mentor and apprentice in Bike Works programs as instructors or as mechanics in the community bike shop or aboard the BikeMobile.
Bicycle Riding Clubs
Bike Riding Programs at Bike Works offer two options. Street Burners is free bike rides and activities for youth alumni that happen on Saturdays and select weekdays throughout the school year. R.I.D.E.S. Clubs (Ride, Investigate, and Discover the Environment and Society) are quarterly sessions where youth gather for a series of Saturday mornings to ride together in a progression that offer youth the ability to engage in positive riding activities while creating community.
Bicycle Summer Camps
We offer physically challenging camps that allow youth to be active and explore their world by bicycle, and hone values for environmental stewardship, community engagement, leadership, and healthy living. All of our touring-specific summer camps include environmental awareness, social and cultural elements, and leadership training.
- RAD Camp – Ride All Day in this camp designed to show you a variety of different bike riding.
- RIDES Camp – Explore Seattle by bicycle in this urban bike riding camp.
- Bicycle Touring Camps – Enjoy all that bike touring has to offer with these different camps of all experience levels.
We work with community partner organizations from South Seattle, along with families from these same neighborhoods, to offer a bike and helmet for youth ages 2-8 who come from low-income families. We also work with public schools in SE Seattle to provide an opportunity for youth aged 9-17 who qualify for free and reduced lunch, and do not have a bicycle, to receive a bike and helmet after completing a short bicycle-safety instruction program in helmet fitting and riding with us. These programs happen monthly/quarterly.
Partnerships & Job Skills Training
After Bike Works partners extensively with schools and community organizations. We collaborate directly with local schools and community groups to offer Bike Works’ core program activities to youth who cannot attend our onsite classes. Site-specific programming can be created in bike repair and riding to meet the needs of the partnership organization. We also offer opportunities for Advanced Earn-A-Bike graduates and youth from Job Readiness programs with partner organizations to work alongside instructors and mechanics on our BikeMobile while preparing themselves for possible work in the bicycle industry.
Drop-in community service program
Drop-in Community Service Program ignites a passion for community service in young people and empowers them to give back to their community by refurbishing bicycles for people in need. As in our Earn-A-Bike program, youth are rewarded for their hard work by earning bikes and parts as they log more hours. Every year youth refurbish over 300 bicycles for redistribution in our Bikes-for-All Youth! bike giveaway program for other young people in their community.