Fall brings new beginnings at Create a Commuter
By Joseph Rosevear, Instructor
On the 1st of October, we partnered with Portland Youth Builders for the first Create a Commuter workshop of the season. It was a fantastic event with ten participants ages 18 – 24. Portland Youth Builders focuses on supporting young men and women who are committed to changing their lives to become self-sufficient, contributing members of the workforce and their community. Our Create a Commuter program helps address some of the barriers to finding employment. The workshop gives participants the opportunity to earn a bicycle as another tool to help them connect to their current jobs or search for employment in their fields. Additionally, the bicycles provide a connection to their family. One student commented that he was excited to have the opportunity to ride his bicycle to visit his niece.
For many folks, the highlight of the day was riding through the Lents neighborhood. After learning to shift gears, the group put the knowledge into practice by climbing a hill before a break at Lents Park to learn map reading and navigation. This gave them an opportunity to locate the Portland Youth Builders office and their home on the map, and then plan safe routes between these locations either by bicycle or using a combination of transportation modes. As part of this training session, the students learned to load their bicycles on a Tri-Met bus rack. This was especially beneficial as many of the participants either rode home or took the bus following the workshop. The coordinator of the Portland Youth Builders event, Deana Mabry, even commented, “The morning after the Create a Commuter workshop, I couldn’t find a spot because the bike rack was so full. I love to see that!”
Big thanks to Portland Youth Builders, and to everyone who supports the Create a Commuter program. The skills learned in this workshop will help the participants take a strong step towards the self-sufficiency Portland Youth Builders strives to foster in the young men and women participating in their program.
We’re looking forward to our next workshop on October 20th with the Native American Youth Family Center.