Bike Folks You Should Know: Working Bikes Co-op in Chicago

Working Bikes Cooperative Logo

Are you familiar with The Working Bikes Cooperative here in Chicago?  They’re located on an industrial stretch of Western Avenue  that’s  not exactly a popular bike route, but their efforts are felt all across the globe.  The Working Bikes Cooperative is a not-for-profit tax-exempt 501(c)3 organization which keeps bikes out of the garbage dumps 0f Chicago by repairing them for sale and for charity.

Working Bikes is primarily volunteer-driven. Currently it receives no government or foundation money. All its operations are funded through the sale of bicycles at its storefront. Working Bikes uses that money to provide bicycles to charity organizations within Chicago-land and to ship bicycles to the Gulf Coast, Ghana, Tanzania, Angola, Cuba, Guatemala, and Peru….Each year Working Bikes gives away over 5,000 bicycles locally and internationally. It distributes about 500 bicycles and wheelchairs in the Chicago area alone: to City programs, refugees and day camps.

Mr. Ding made a trip over to the Co-op this week.  Unfortunately I forgot to give him the camera so you’ll just have to check out their website, or their blog, or stop by and visit them yourself.   We did a little house-cleaning and dropped off the following items at the Co-op:

  • A used trail-a-bike that we bought to use with Little Ding that we are not using
  • A Schwinn bike trailer in perfect shape sans the wheels (stolen)
  • Brand-new tires that we bought for said trailer, that were the wrong size/type
  • A tie-down/strap-type bike carrier good for cars or small SUVs (we had to buy a larger hitch-mount carrier)

They were friendly and helpful and happy to take our gear. We were happy to have the space!


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