2016 Annual Report

Progress

Youth in BOCA attend the Renters Day of ActionGraduates from Girls In Action with Youth Employees In 2016, we worked extensively on a campaign against displacement in Jamaica Plain and Roxbury, neighborhoods that many of our members call home. Youth in BOCA (Bicyclists Organizing for Community Action) identified this issue as a key threat to the health of their communities. We first began thinking more about the connection between bikes and housing when we compared the amount of bike infrastructure and Hubway stations in low-income to high-income areas. Since then we joined and have been working closely with the Keep It 100 for Egleston coalition and have attended 11 public meetings, and 10 actions. We will be continuing to work against displacement to ensure our youth members and their families have secure housing in the neighborhoods they have fought to improve.

We have also continued to work on a formalized youth Membership program, which launched this summer! At an inaugural event, 13 young people became members. We now have a calendar full of events, rides, and retreats that allow members to remain active at Bikes Not Bombs, even after their involvement through Earn-A-Bike, Girls In Action or as a youth employee ends.

A purposeful shift of Youth Employee demographics has also been underway as Youth Directors have focused on increasing the number of young women working with us. This winter 40% of our youth employees are women, an important step towards creating the world we want to see. We see this change as developing the leadership potential throughout our programs as young students in Youth Programs will see both male and female leaders throughout Bikes Not Bombs.

We continued our push for gender equality at the Youth Bike Summit where we brought our largest group ever, 15 young people including 4 young women. At the Summit, which was held in the Twin Cities, youth presented our Know Your Rights workshop for the 40+ attendees of the Summit. We’re looking forward to the 2017 Youth Bike Summit in Arlington, Virginia in October and will soon be hard at work planning our presentations.

This year we also ran 5 sessions of youth Earn-A-Bike and 1 session of Girls In Action. We are continuously working to ensure the right mix of mechanics training, group bike rides, and related workshops are being fit into the sessions, but with the help of our talented youth employees and volunteers had 80 youth graduate from youth programs with a refurbished bike, lock, and helmet.

Adult Earn-A-Bike graduates at their Graduation CeremonyYouth staff work at Bike-In, which now has weekly support from a Shop Mechanic 2016 has been a year of growth in programming at the Bike Shop: we expanded our Adult Earn-A-Bike program (AEAB), revamped our Advanced Mechanics course, and took an active role at Bike-In, the weekly open shop time led by BNB youth. At the same time, the Shop has continued to improve how it serves the bike community in Boston, who, in turn, help us generate revenue for BNB’s other programs.

AEAB was piloted in 2015 and quickly became a popular resource for those who rely on bikes for transportation in Boston, but do not have the financial means to buy one. In this program participants earn a bicycle through volunteering. This year we graduated 41 participants, each leaving with a reconditioned bike, lights, lock, a helmet, and knowledge about bike maintenance and riding in the city. Some of these graduates have continued to maintain their bikes at our AEAB Alumni Night, which was held twice a month over the season and gives participants access to our tools and workstands. Others have enjoyed the discount on parts and labor that graduating from the program grants you.

We are particularly excited about our revamped Advanced Mechanics course where twelve BNB youth employees come to the Shop in smaller groups three days a week. These young people are working hard to get ready to teach Earn-A-Bike in the spring or to work with BOCA, doing community organizing in the JP/Roxbury area. The course gives them the chance to work closely with shop mechanics, mastering some of the skills that they were exposed to in Earn-A-Bike or Girls in Action. We cover everything from adjusting a hub to bleeding hydraulic disc brakes. In prior years, the course has been taught to larger groups of young people but we’ve found smaller class sizes and better teacher-to-student ratios allows everyone to get hands on experience and really focus on the lessons.

As the 2016 season wound down, we started planning for 2017. Reconditioned road bikes have always been the bread and butter of the BNB Shop, but this year we’ve had a particularly wide selection of bikes that were donated in good shape. This has allowed us to tune-up the bikes without replacing many of the parts, resulting in a more affordable bike for many customers. By the end of the year, we had already fixed-up over a hundred of these bikes – we’re ready for you, 2017!

Carlos (center), Founder of Bici-Tec, supervises a bici-blender workshop with BNB Youth“Many more women are getting interested in riding bikes now.” - Kiki Kithinji, Women’s Bike Programme Coordinator

One of the great strengths of BNB’s international work is our commitment to deep, sustainable impacts. Sustainable impact means strategic investment, continuous, and long term support to locally proposed solutions, and empowering our partners to be today and tomorrow’s leaders at the forefront of social change. In 2016 we shipped seven containers, totaling 3,796 bicycles, visited two partners in Kenya and Nevis, organized a successful speaking tour for one of our partners, hired a new International Programs Coordinator, and continued to build relationships and capacities with our partners.

In January, our International Programs Director, Charlotte Fagan, visited our partner Cycloville in Nairobi, Kenya. One of the many highlights of the trip was organizing a Women’s Bike Forum, which was the largest ever gathering of women cyclists in Kenya at the time with 25 women attending to discuss barriers to women biking and potential strategies moving forward. BNB then helped to enact the strategies brainstormed that day by supporting Cycloville to launch the Women’s Bike Programme (WBP). The WBP trains adult women how to ride a bike, provides micro-grants for women’s biking events and fosters leadership development amongst female cyclists to be leaders of the bike movement in Kenya.

Another highlight of 2016 was Bici-Tec founder Carlos Marroquin’s speaking tour entitled “Advancing Pedal Power Technology.” Carlos got the chance to share his inspirational journey of inventing pedal powered machines to address the needs of his community throughout 30+ events in 3 countries, speaking to more than 1,100 people and building 14 pedal-powered machines during his 6 week tour. This tour was first brainstormed by Carlos in 2015, and true to our values of helping partners enact their goals, we helped to organize the successful tour to further Bici-Tec’s goals and long-term sustainability.

In 2016 we also hired Manizha Baraki as our International Program’s Coordinator! Manizha works to ensure an amplified and long term impact of our partners at the grassroots level. Manizha joins us with a Master’s degree in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University and had previously worked with UN Women in Afghanistan and UN Women headquarters in New York. She has already been playing a crucial role in the Women’s Bike Programme and ongoing new partner outreach - we are thrilled to have her at Bikes Not Bombs!

Our partners’ constant progress and growth as leaders of their communities and beyond keeps us motivated on a daily basis, and we look forward to further building our mutual ability to use bicycles as vehicle for social change in the coming year.

Bike-A-Thon riders pose before the rideTitle sponsors Team GlassmanAt our 29th Annual Bike-A-Thon on June 19th, we were thrilled to welcome 730 registered riders and raise over $193,000 at the event. While we had to delay the event two weeks to the rain date, it was still a blast! With an extra two weeks, riders had more time to get extra amped for the event and fundraise, which is a testament to the relentless strength and support of our community.

We welcomed back many of our favorite teams and individuals including the Bicycling Bananas team organized by 7 year old Oz; top fundraiser (for 11 years!) Jon McCurdy; and title sponsor Team Glassman. A number of new riders and teams also joined us, like Team Femmechanics, a group of femme, trans and/or women riders; the BC High Charity team, and Ted Chaloner, a regular volunteer who broke into the top ranks of Bike-A-Thon fundraisers. This was also the first year we had a three-way tie for team with the most new riders; Team Glassman, Team Femmechanics, and the BC High Charity team all brought 9 new riders to the event!

One big change this year was catering from El Pelon Taqueria! We were thrilled to work with the local restaurant to bring delicious rice, beans, veggies, and meat to the event to fuel our hungry riders. The food got rave reviews from riders, hard-working volunteers, and enthusiastic youth.

After our riders rode a collective 20,635 miles on June 19th we were honored to note that the event brought in about 14% of our overall funding for the year. This allows us to continue working towards our mission of using the bicycle as a vehicle for social change. We are excited to continue improving and expanding the route as we head into 2017, come ride with us on June 4th, 2017!

A Bike Drive in Greater BostonGuests attend our 6th Annual Building Momentum BreakfastBikes Not Bombs is an organization that is made possible by thousands of volunteers, donors, bike shop customers, program participants, and supporters who share our mission for social change and we are proud to have expanded this base of support in 2016. All our fundraising models build on the strengths of our existing supporters and use their commitment and networks to inspire other people to contribute to our programs. In short, we turn our biggest fans into our best fundraisers.Through expanding these strategies in 2016, we were able to raise $620,000 in individual gifts. Our grants program also expanded in 2016, raising $158,300 with 2 new foundations: NBT, and Common Stream.

Beyond our financial growth, our Bike Collections program also had a record year. We forged new relationships with bike shops and Bike Drive organizers allowing us to bring in hundreds more bikes than last year. Big shoutouts to Landry’s Bicycles and Broadway Bicycle School for saving their parts for us and Tim Myles and Family in Portsmouth, NH for holding a bike drive that brought in 90 bikes. Because of these efforts, our warehouse in Dorchester filled to capacity eight different points throughout the year, requiring our Bike Collections Manager to play bike tetris to fit them all in!

By the numbers

Youth Programs

  • 40 youth employees hired
  • 80 bikes earned through Earn-A-Bike and Girls In Action
  • 16 Unity Rides, highlighting gentrification, gardens, art and green spaces in Boston, led by BOCA

Bike Shop

  • 2,277 bikes repaired for customers
  • 1,166 member discounts used
  • 41 Adult Earn-A-Bike participants graduated

International Programs

  • 1,110+ attended the 'Advancing Pedal Power Technology Tour' which spanned 3 countries and 30+ events
  • 3,796 bikes shipped
  • 110 women graduated from Learn-To-Ride in Kenya

Bike-A-Thon

  • 730 registered riders
  • 20,635 miles ridden on June 5th, 2016
  • $193,729 raised

Resources

  • 33 bike drives hosted by volunteers in the Greater Boston area
  • 6,250 bikes collected
  • 6,065 individual donors

Stories

Click each photo to read more...

Youth

Sisi Holley

In 2016, 16 year old Sisi joined us as a youth employee and quickly became a main spokesperson for BOCA’s work on affordable housing. Sisi had first hand experience with rising rents and had just been forced to move from Roxbury to Mattapan due to rising housing costs. Her supervisor Modesto says she jumped into the campaign not only because she has that experience, “but also because she cares deeply about what is happening to those around her. She knows that the City can do better."

Sisi’s most memorable experience came during a direct action at the Boston Redevelopment Authority’s rebranding event when she stood up with the community to call for more affordable housing in Jamaica Plain and Roxbury. But while this event will always stick in her memory, her main takeaway from BNB is when to transition to other tactics. Sisi not only protested at City Hall but also sat down with Mayor Walsh in a formal meeting only a few months later. She says “knowing when to make that switch” between calling for a seat at the table and sitting at the table is an important lesson.

Sisi is now in another transition as she pursues her goal of being a professional chef. She’s already earned her GED and secured an internship with a local chef where she’ll receive mentorship and ensure that she’s pursuing the right career for her. But, Sisi promises, “I’ll be back!”
Bike Shop

Miguel Guerrero

Miguel Guerrero is one of our more dedicated youth employees and a consistent volunteer at BNB. At 14 years old, he has already taken Earn-A-Bike and went on to work as a youth instructor, in addition to participating in BOCA, Bike-In, and our Unity Rides.Last winter, he joined our Advanced Mechanics program at the Bike Shop to build on what he’s learned as a Youth Instructor. He was determined to master truing a disc brake rotor and luckily this was accomplished in the second class. In addition to what he’s learning, Miguel also appreciates taking a break from being at the Hub and getting to work with the mechanics at the Bike Shop. The best part of the class for him so far was bleeding hydraulic brakes and he didn’t even seem to mind when someone spilled mineral oil on his shirt!

International

Ta Corrales

In early 2016, Bikes Not Bombs supported recent MIT graduate Ta Corrales with a scholarship to attend the Bici-Tec School of Appropriate Bici-Technology in San Andres Itzapa, Guatemala. Upon returning to her home community of San Jose, Costa Rica, Ta helped launch a new appropriate technology innovation center, and organized the first ever National Conference on Pedal Power. Speaking of her experience, Ta said “I was able to co-design with a remarkable self-taught engineer, live a community immersion, and build and deploy machines for real users. This experience also significantly impacted my approach to community development. In my future work, I want to incorporate Bici-Tec's approach to locally driven development, along with the ways in which [Bici-Tec Founder] Carlos uses his deep insight and understanding of the communities he works in to come up with contextualized brilliant solutions.”

Bike-A-Thon

Frank Ashenuga

Rider Frank Ashenuga takes his Bike-A-Thon ride very seriously. Each year, after registering in early March, Frank begins his fitness training program and talks to everyone he meets - at the grocery store or at Boston Bike Party- about his involvement with BNB and his upcoming ride. He knocks on doors, follows up with neighbors, and diligently gets his miles in to prepare for June. And Frank gets results! This year he raised $879 from 45 individual donors!

In 2017 Frank says he wants to explore business donations and perhaps host an event for his supporters. He is excited to keep spreading the word and supporting Bikes Not Bombs because of his connection to Youth Programs, where he first volunteered in 2014. Frank enjoys seeing the camaraderie between participants as they learn how to be self-sufficient on a bike and is always excited to see graduates he worked with in Earn-A-Bike riding down the Southwest Corridor.
Resources

Awesome Thursday Night Volunteers!

If you’ve ever been to Volunteer Night on a Thursday, then one of the things that you cannot miss is the camaraderie among the volunteers - and that really solidified in 2016. We have over 10 volunteers that come every Thursday, without fail, and their commitment is necessary to processing all our donated bikes! These volunteers hold highly specialized roles such as parts sorting or teaching bike flattening. As Janie Harari, one of the regulars says, “I look forward to Thursday night starting on Friday morning!” One of the most amazing things about Thursday Nights is that the whole group - whether new or returning volunteers - goes out together to Galway House after Volunteer Night ends and continue hanging out. We love them and are so grateful for their commitment!

Financials

Bike Shop 45%   $661,336
Donations from individuals and corporations 40%   $583,917
Grants 13%   $194,511
Program revenue 2%   $311,650
Other miscellaneous income $1,113
Bike Shop 44% $645,567
Youth Programs 17% $245,567
International Programs 10% $150,460
Education and outreach 11% $155,821
Bike collections 5% $78,505
Fundraising 4% $53,084
Administration and operations 10% $142,045
Direct program expenses:   87% $1,275,565
Fundraising & Admin Expenses:   13% $195,129

Acknowledgements

  • Adrienne Shapiro & Kit Transue
  • Alan Shapiro
  • Alex Caraballo
  • Alice Stowell
  • Allen & Lisa Downey
  • Allie Hunter McDade
  • Allistair Mallillin
  • Amit Mukherjee
  • Amy Wilson
  • Andrew Cebulski
  • Andrew Coate
  • Andrew Richardson
  • Andy Young
  • Anita Johnson
  • Annie Hamilton
  • Aparna & Philip Rolfe
  • Ariel Maddocks
  • Arthur Holcombe & Susan Holcombe
  • Boe Shulman
  • Brian Sway
  • Butler Lampson
  • Caitlin Corneliess
  • Cathy Waters
  • Chris Leong
  • Chris Yoder
  • Colleen DuBois
  • Cynthia Keesan
  • Dan Reid
  • Dave Boudreau
  • David Goshgarian
  • David Klafter & Suzette Abbott
  • David Kleinschmidt & Katherine Olney
  • David Lourd
  • David Murray
  • David Nierenberg
  • David Plonka
  • David Read
  • David Weinstein
  • Elijah Evans
  • Elizabeth Lyman
  • Elizabeth Vitale & Stewart Wolff
  • Eric Uhrhane
  • Everett Briggs
  • Exavier Torres
  • Frank Dunau & Amy Davis
  • G Daniel Prigmore
  • Gary Eichhorn
  • Gary Shapiro
  • George Lee
  • Gregory Bialecki
  • Gregory Ryan
  • Harriet Fell
  • Heath Maddox
  • Henry Dormitzer
  • Ian Crowley
  • Ira Ockene
  • Itai Lourie
  • J. Pappenheimer & Martha Brouwer
  • James Houghton
  • James M. Sharpe & Deborah Stein Sharpe
  • Jamie Weller
  • Jane Craycroft & Steve Wimberg
  • Janie Harari
  • Jean Ann Nierenberg
  • Jesse Horan
  • Jim Campen & Phyllis Ewen
  • Jim Crawford
  • Joe Lieber
  • Johannes Schouten
  • John Brinkerhoff
  • John Childs
  • John Graham & Katharine Munro
  • John Hanson
  • John McGuire
  • John O'Neil III
  • Jon McCurdy
  • Katherine Gross & Peter Thorne
  • Kathryn Schrag
  • Ken Leinbach
  • Kenneth Kruckemeyer
  • Kimberly Ramsey, Dave, Lucas & Paloma Caron
  • Laura & Dennis Marston
  • Laurel & Craig Deery
  • Lee Archung
  • Lissa Winstanley
  • Lynn Babington & Randy Carpenter
  • Maria Panico Balestrieri & Matthew Balestrieri
  • Mark Sadecki
  • Mark Stewart
  • Martha Shults
  • Martinas Andrius
  • Mary Liz Kehler
  • Matt Stott
  • Matthew & Betsey St. Onge
  • Matthew Huber
  • Meghan Kardok
  • Michael & Kate Duffield
  • Michael Gero
  • Michael Wessels & Patricia Maher
  • Michelle Guerin
  • Nancy Braus & Richard Geidel
  • Neil Leifer
  • Norman J Fisher & Doris Fisher
  • Oren Gersten
  • Paulie Peña IV
  • Peter Munkenbeck & Renata Von Tscharner
  • Raisler Cohn Family
  • Randall Battat
  • Raymond Dearden Jr.
  • Richard & Susan Beckett
  • Richard Higger
  • Rob Townsend
  • Robert Kleinberg
  • Robert Rosofsky
  • Robert Zevin
  • Roberto Melendez
  • Robson Goulart
  • Rosy Rosenwinkle
  • Russell Cox
  • Rustin McIntosh
  • Sarah Claudette & Chad Brazier
  • Scott Minkin
  • Scott Nielsen & Nelia Sargent
  • Scott Rosenthal
  • Solomon Roth
  • Stan Chen & Kimberly Pitman
  • Stephan Revilak & Julie Rioux
  • Stephen Goldstein
  • Stephen Puopolo
  • Steve Greene
  • Stewart Lanier
  • Susan Avery
  • Susan Holcombe
  • Susan Loucks
  • Ted Chaloner
  • Thomas Miller
  • Thomas Stilwell Lamont II & Barbara Silber Lamont
  • Tim Cooke
  • Tim Neunzig
  • Timothy McCormack
  • Timothy Riley
  • Todd Rowell
  • Tom Bubier
  • Tom Burns
  • Tom Innis
  • Victoria Lowell
  • Virginia de Lima
  • Werner Lohe
  • Whitman Family
  • Will & Susan Twombly
  • William Furr
  • Xenia Pantos
  • Anna B. Stearns Foundation
  • Barets O'Benjamin Foundation
  • Charlotte Foundation
  • Clippership Foundation
  • Common Stream
  • Donald & Susan Babson Foundation
  • Eugene M Lang Foundation
  • Helen & William Mazer Foundation
  • Henry Niles Foundation
  • Hyams Foundation
  • International Foundation
  • Josephine & Louise Crane Foundation, Inc
  • Martha & Donald Farley Family Fund
  • Mary Curtis Trust
  • MLK Summer Scholars
  • New World Foundation
  • NTB II Foundation
  • Robbins De Beaumont Foundation
  • Rubblestone Foundation
  • Samuel Rubin Foundation
  • Sarah W Rollins Charitable Trust
  • The Nararo Foundation
  • Amadaus North America, Inc
  • Bici-Tec
  • Bikes for the World
  • Boston College High School
  • Bowdoin Bikes
  • Cambridge Brewing Company
  • CESTA
  • City Feed & Supply
  • City Life/Vida Urbana
  • Climate Ride INC
  • Community Builders Cooperative
  • CRESA Partners Boston, Inc.
  • Cycloville
  • Egleston YMCA
  • El Pelon
  • Flat Top Johnny's
  • Giant Bicycles
  • John Trinity Property Management
  • Karbank Real Estate Company
  • Keep it 100 for Egleston
  • KIND Bars
  • Kryptonite
  • Law offices of Jeffrey Glassman
  • MIT D-Lab
  • Narragansett Bay Wheelmen
  • Patagonia
  • Peace & Reconciliation Charities
  • Powisset Farm
  • Re-Cycle
  • Ripples Group
  • Robert Reiser & Co., INC
  • Samuel Adams
  • Spontaneous Celebrations
  • Ula Cafe
  • Unnamed Coalition
  • Village Bicycle Project
  • Youth Justice & Power Union
  • Amelie Ratliff
  • Amy Battisti-Ashe & Michael Muehe
  • Andrea Fleck Clardy
  • Austin Wertheimer
  • Ben Brady
  • Bob Dizon & Kris Richardson
  • Bob Thomas & Polly Hoppin
  • David Fischer & Carol O'Connor-Fischer
  • David Hastings
  • Eric Krauter
  • Gwyn Jones & Ariel Phillips
  • John Dacey
  • John Phillips
  • Judith McMichael
  • Ken & Anna Juster
  • Kevin Cradock
  • Kevin Mohan
  • Pamela Haran & David Godkin
  • Robert Kamen & Geertruida Veldman
  • Robert Vandermark
  • Scott & Mary Carson
  • Steve Bercu
  • Sue Edwards
  • Adult Earn-A-Bike Instructors
  • Bike Drive Organizers
  • Container Loading Volunteers
  • Thursday Night Volunteers
  • Youth Member-Leaders

A PDF file of this report is available for download online.

To request a paper copy of this report, please email mail@bikesnotbombs.org or call 617-522-0222.