Everyone knows someone elderly and everyone can appreciate how isolating old age can become, regardless of the current pandemic situation. Cycling Without Age Chichester plans to help relieve this isolation and bring some fresh air and happiness back into the lives of many of our family, friends, neighbours, and the community in general. A "trishaw" is a specially built bicycle to allow 2 passengers to be piloted by a volunteer around their local community. The passengers are safely transported around the local area, passing the local sights and places of interest, and into nature to help them reconnect with their local community that they may feel they have lost touch with. Rides are slow and allow for stops to chat with passers-by; they can vary in length and route depending on the situation. Nothing like a good nosey around to see what's happening! We are looking to raise funds to purchase our first trishaw to allow us to bring this project to life.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
The benefits of this project are three-fold: 1) To bring happiness to the passengers. The elderly and isolated may often not leave their residence for days on end and the chance to get out and see the town, breathe the fresh air, enjoy the local nature and chat to others out and about can give enormous benefits for both physical and mental health. 2) To allow local residents to volunteer to give back to their local community (as little or often as they wish). Often residents wish to volunteer to support others (as eveidenced by the recent overwhelming response to call for NHS Volunteer Responders), but are unsure how. This project is a simple way to get involved - it's as easy as riding a bike! 3) The connections that this project will give all those involved - the passengers, the pilots, the organisers and the community. These connections, however small, are immeasurable in their value - they can be a simple smile, to the planting of a seed of something bigger.
Steps to get it done:
Cycling Without Age is a global initiative established in Denmark in 2012. Since then, the movement has grown to over 2,200 locations in 50 countries around the world. There are already very successful chapters across the UK (locally in Weymouth, Southampton, Portsmouth and Brighton), but not yet one in Chichester! Please see https://cyclingwithoutage.org for more background information and plenty of inspiring stories and videos. The COVID-19 pandemic has been and still is an enormous challenge for everyone, but if anything, it has brought to the forefront of people's minds how much more we can do as a community to support those often locked out of sight. Please support this project to prove that good things can come from even the most bleakest of situations.
About the space
West Sussex County Council