Y.O.U. and CEDC Collaborate to Address Immigrant Community Transportation Needs Through Bike and Helmet Donations

SPECIAL TO LOVE THE AVE / Press information from  our friends and partners at Y.O.U. and CEDC

NEW BEDFORD, MA – Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.) and Acushnet Avenue’s Community Economic Development Center (CEDC) have announced a collaborative effort aimed at addressing the transportation challenges faced by the immigrant community. In an initiative focused on fostering accessibility and mobility, Y.O.U. donated bicycles to support the transportation needs of immigrants in our community. Each person who received a donated bike also received a bike lock, along with helmets donated by Senator Montigny’s Children’s Fund. (Sen. Montigny is pictured above center.)

The partnership between Y.O.U. and CEDC reinforces a commitment to creating inclusive solutions that empower individuals and promote community well-being. By providing bicycles and helmets, the organizations aim to enhance the mobility options available to immigrants, enabling them to access essential services, employment opportunities, and educational resources more easily. Last year, Y.O.U. and CEDC hosted a bicycle giveaway, donating 13 bicycles to newly immigrated community members. The initiative was such a success that they have teamed up again to reach more people.

“We are thrilled to join forces with the Community Economic Development Center to address the transportation barriers experienced by members of our immigrant community,” said Bernadette Souza, Executive Director of Y.O.U. “At Y.O.U., we believe in the power of community collaboration to drive positive change. Through this partnership, we hope to make a meaningful difference in the lives of our immigrant community by providing them with the tools they need to navigate their daily lives with greater independence and ease.”

The initiative has been met with enthusiasm by the Community Economic Development Center. “We are so excited to collaborate again with Y.O.U. to distribute bicycles to newcomer adults,” noted Corinn Williams, Director of CEDC, pictured above right. “These bicycles will be so beneficial to ride to work, shopping and recreation. Now that the weather is getting warmer, riding bicycles is also a great way to discover the city’s neighborhoods, parks, and beaches.”

The bike and helmet donations represent a tangible expression of solidarity and support for the immigrant community. Y.O.U., CEDC and Senator Montigny’s Children’s Fund recognize the importance of collaborative efforts in building a more inclusive and equitable society, and this partnership exemplifies their shared dedication to serving the needs of all community members.

Over the past year, Y.O.U. has launched a Community Bike Shop dedicated to providing both access to and training in bicycle maintenance and repairs for the youth in Greater New Bedford. Y.O.U.’s Bike Manager has refurbished numerous donated bicycles, which are then distributed to children within the community. The Community Bike Shop, located at 195 West Rodney French Blvd on West Beach in New Bedford, welcomes the public for youth bike servicing and accepts donations. Operating hours are Saturdays from 10am to 2pm during the Spring season, starting April 20th, with an additional day on Tuesdays from 9am to 12pm throughout the Summer.

For more information about the initiative or to inquire about donation opportunities, please visit their website www.younb.org or contact Katie Roberts, Program Operations Director, via email at [email protected]

About Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.):

Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in New Bedford, Massachusetts. They provide hands-on, nature-based educational experiences in a safe and fun environment while supporting youth’s academic learning and their physical, social, and emotional well-being.  Their mission is to tap into the wonder and curiosity of youth to seek adventure and learn naturally. Their vision is for all youth to develop a strong sense of self, gain essential life skills, and discover their passions, which bring them joy and positively impact their community.

About the Community Economic Development Center (CEDC):

The Community Economic Development Center (CEDC) mission is to create a more just local economy by building bridges to resources, networks, and cooperative action for new immigrants and working families to find their way to economic opportunity. Their vision is to provide a three-prong “people-centered asset-based” pathway where all those in the immigrant community and working families have access to essential resources and skill-building connections within the community to work collaboratively towards longer-term community change and resilience.