About BforH

Donate a bike, change a life! 

Bicycles for Humanity is a grassroots organization that collects bicycles, puts them in large shipping containers, and then ships them to an impoverished location. Bicycles for Humanity, Seattle is dedicated to shipping thousands of bicycles to South Africa every year to help poor and impoverished villagers improve their lives with transportation. When 500 bikes are collected, they will then be shipped to South Africa via cargo container. There, local community leaders will distribute the bikes to villagers. Donating a bike will help people get a job, get an education, and get access to health care. 

There are about 50 chapters of Bicycles for Humanity across the globe, although the vast majority of them are in North America. The parent organization is Bicycles for Humanity, www.bicycles-for-humanity.org. The local organization is Bicycles for Humanity-Seattle, www.b4hs.org. I am actually part of the Seattle organization but operate mostly independently across Puget Sound in Kitsap County and the Olympic Peninsula.

Bicycles are also distributed locally in Kitsap County and Clallam County.

We are a 100% volunteer organization. Absolutely no one is paid so much as one cent for their labor.

Why am I doing this? 

In the year 2000 I turned 50 years of age. I celebrated with a five week vacation of a lifetime by going to Africa where I visited South Africa, Botswana, and Zimbabwe. It was my first time out of the country and a life changing event, as well as one of the most educational five weeks of my life. I was changed forever. I saw poverty like I had only read about and experienced first hand what third world countries were like. I could fill dozens of pages with my experiences, but I will briefly tell you of only one. I was doing volunteer work in South Africa in the Kwa-Zulu-Natal area, the destination of our bicycle shipments. On a day off we were taken to a school. The floors were dirt, there were no writing boards so they just used chalk on a wall, there were only outhouses since there was no running water. The school was proud that they just purchased some book shelves so the repository books didn’t have to be laid on the dirt floors. Their next task was to save the $1200 necessary to get a water pipe to the schoolI’m not talking about plumbing, that would be a pipe dream! I mean, just a water line so they didn’t have to walk a long way to get drinking water.

I re-started recreational bicycling about the same time I went to Africa, although I have had at least one bike in the garage for most of my life. After selling one a short time ago, I now have “only” three. I remember seeing  bicycles when I was in Africa, many times miles from a town, although most people were on foot. I also remember a person telling me that it is not unusual for a child to have to walk 5 miles to go to school. Many parents wouldn’t allow their children to go to school since they couldn’t do chores if they had to spend 4 or 5 hours a day walking to school and back. 

I retired in the summer of 2010 after 24 years with the city of Seattle. In early January of 2011 I was browsing on the internet and I came across the website for Bicycles for Humanity. The purpose of B4H connected with me on many levels, as may be evident from what I have written here. I started to investigate the feasibility of collecting bicycles on the Olympic Peninsula and it looked like a ‘go’ to me, so off I went to set up a bicycle collection system.  I’ve teamed up with the successful Seattle chapter to help them collect even more bicycles and will hopefully get enough donations to fill several shipping containers here in Kitsap County and the Olympic Peninsula. That’s my story and that’s my goal.

How do we do it?

Here's a short video describing the process:

Here's a video describing the major benefits of the program:

Want to see a comprehensive video on how all this is done? Watch this: