Be it with the traditional front-and-back tandem or now a side-by-side bike, these bicycle riding volunteers have their guests ready to roll.
After a year of uncertainty — and no rides — the Sequim Wheelers are back on Sequim paths and the Olympic Discovery Trail, offering rides to fellow citizens with mobility issues.
New this year is the offering of a side-by-side tandem bike the club purchased last year but was unable to use after the COVID-19 pandemic shut down all rides, Sequim Wheelers founder/president Nicole Lepping said.
“The elderly person or whomever can engage in pedaling, so it’s physical, not just mental health,” she said this week, not long after finishing a ride with residents of Sherwood Assisted Living to Railroad Bridge Park.
“Also, it’s a bit nice to sit next to each other,” she said. “You can engage in pedaling but you don’t have to; there are footrests.”
The nonprofit that formed in 2018 now had four adaptive bikes that see “pilots” and their guests hit the trails.
Like many other groups in the Sequim community, 2020 was a tough year for the Sequim Wheelers, Lepping said, particularly for local elderly residents who were unable to enjoy the outdoors.
“We were bummed out for them and everyone,” Lepping said. “That was the group of people that got hit the hardest … (so) we’re really happy we can offer this.”
The group has about 30 active volunteer “pilots” but the organization is always seeking more, Lepping said. For more about the group or to volunteer, email to firstname.lastname@example.org or see sequimwheelers.com or facebook.com/sequimwheelers.
To contact the group by mail or to donate, mail to: Sequim Wheelers, PO Box 276, Carlsborg WA 98324.
Home Instead of Clallam & Jefferson Counties is joining forces with the Sequim Wheelers for a special fundraising event this month.
GIVE65 donations will support Sequim Wheelers, and has the chance to be matched up to $5,000, said Pam Scott, home care consultant with PNW Kupuna Care in Sequim.
Home Instead Charities is providing $150,000 matching grants and each organization is eligible for up to $5,000.
“Matching grants always go quickly, so we’re encouraging donors to give right when the event kicks off,” Scott said.
The fundraiser began July 13 and ends at 11 p.m. on Thursday, July 15.
“To qualify they had to go thru a ton of paperwork and vetting process and demonstrate that they provide services and benefits to seniors in our community,” Scott said. “Many of the residents in our local long term care communities have been able to participate in this wonderful program.”
To donate, go to give65.org/Sequim_Wheelers.