Social enterprise offering bikes to Liverpool City Region NHS heroes
A Liverpool City Region social enterprise is pledging to make more than 100 of its hire bicycles available free to NHS staff as they battle coronavirus.
HYPE Merseyside will be delivering 100 bikes to frontline NHS workers over the next month, after their initial offer to staff from Arrowe Park Hospital was met by an overwhelming response.
They received 60 applications for the first 100 bikes in just 48 hours from NHS employees living within five miles of the hospital. The main reasons cited for wanting access to one of the donated bikes were to save money by not having to take taxis when public transport wasn’t available and to improve their own fitness.
HYPE is now inviting other NHS workers from Merseyside to apply for a bike and has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise £20,000 to help it deliver even more bikes to members of the 50,000+ NHS staff community across the region.
All money raised from the crowdfunding campaign will be spent on buying more bikes and repairing those donated by the public, ready to be provided to NHS workers across Merseyside.
Matthew Houghton, chief executive at HYPE Merseyside, said: “We believe that the NHS staff working tirelessly across the region in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak are true heroes, the real ‘pride of Merseyside’ and we wanted to find a way to show our appreciation and help them during this crisis.
“Providing 100 bikes from our existing fleet was an immediate and obvious way that we could help. However, it quickly became clear that the demand was far greater than our initial supply. With the help of the people of Merseyside, we can use our network and expertise to go even further and source more bikes, providing more frontline workers with free, healthy and safe transport.”
Members of the public can support HYPE Merseyside’s campaign by either making a donation via the crowdfunding page or contacting them directly to donate any unwanted bikes that they may have. The organisation will be collecting unwanted bikes from homes across the region throughout April and May.
Matthew added: “We want bikes that are too big, too small, rusty or those that you simply don’t have space for anymore. Our team will be happy you collect them, repair them and give them a new lease of life before handing them over to one of our local NHS heroes.”
Established in 2007 to deliver workshops for teenagers in deprived wards during the summer holidays, HYPE Merseyside’s cycling and development plan now focuses on getting more people, more active, more often through cycling.