Archive Post from August 26th, 2016
It all started with a bike...
Edvar Camara was twelve years old when he first found his way to Trips For Kids Marin’s Earn-A-Bike program in San Rafael. Wanting to ride with his father both on and off the hills of Marin County, Edvar participated in the Earn-A-Bike’s after school program, repairing, refurbishing and rebuilding donated bikes while earning credits towards one of his own. Upon completion, Edvar came away not only with the ability to spend quality time with his dad, but he also had learned valuable technical and mechanical skills in the process. A win-win.
But Edvar’s story doesn’tend there. Fast forward to August 6th, 2016. Edvar, now a high-schooler, has just completed the 35-mile course at the Marin Cyclists’ 2016 Marin Century ride, alongside Marin Cyclists club member Carol Feagles, thanks in large part to the generosity of local cyclist Stanley Guth who donated a race registration. What began as simply wanting to ride with his father as a boy has now developed into a passion and dedication to the sport, thanks in large part to the true community effort that supported him along the way. But his story could have ended differently.
As the participation costs for private club sports rise, and as school sports and after-school programs face increasing pressure due to shrinking budgets, the options for sports participation become increasingly limited for many kids, especially those from low-income families. And this is where community-based programs like Trips For Kids’ Trail Rides, Earn-A-Bike and Mobile Bike Workshops help fill an important need, providing an option for healthy after-school activity, teaching valuable life lessons, creating strong friendships, inspiring life-long environmental appreciation and stewardship, all while fostering a deep love for the sport of cycling.
It was Edvar’s passion for cycling, along with the support of the Earn-A-Bike program, that steered him back on track during a rough patch early on in high school, helping get his grades back in shape so that he could participate in the San Rafael Dawgs Mountain Biking Team. And now Edvar completes his 35-mile Marin Century ride proudly wearing the Dawgs team kit, representing both the team and his hard work along the way, proving what happens when a community truly rallies around their youth.
And the story continues: Edvar is now working as an assistant instructor at the Earn-A-Bike workshop, along with teaching an after-school program through the Canal Alliance, using his story - and his passion for mountain biking - to inspire other kids as well.
But it all started with a bike..
We would like to graciously thank Marin Cyclists for their continued support of Trips For Kids’ programs, as well as send a huge thanks to Carol and Stanley for making this story possible.
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