We are super excited to announce the launch of Black Girls Do Bike Newport, our chapter of the national community of women and girls of color who share a love of biking. The vision of Black Girls Do Bike (BGDB) is to establish a comfortable place where seasoned and new female bicycle riders can support one another, organize rides, advocate for people who want to ride bikes, and promote skill sharing. BGDB champions efforts to introduce the joy of riding bicycles to all women, but especially black women and girls.
Black Girls Do Bike was founded by Monica Garrison in 2013 after a summer of riding through the streets of Pittsburgh, and Garrison wondering why she didn’t see more women like herself. What started as a question – “Do black girls bike? – has evolved into a national organization with more than 90 chapters, each with its own Facebook group, all led by a community Shero.
Bike Newport’s Shero is Allyson McCalla, our Director of Community Relations and Administration, and certified Bicycle Instructor. Allyson launched the Newport chapter in September 2020. “I spoke with Monica at a national conference in 2019 and knew then that I wanted to bring Black Girls Do Bike to Newport. At the time, it sparked my interest to get back on a bike and then to become a certified instructor for our education programs. Now I want to inspire others like me to enjoy our city, our lives, and our well-being on a bike,” says McCalla. “Our chapter of Black Girls Do Bike brings together women of color to share a passion, ride together, motivate one another, and grow the community of black girls who do bike.” So far, the Newport Chapter has nearly 200 people in its Facebook group – which is private, but open to any WOC or supporter who seeks a bicycling community. Allyson talks about starting Black Girls Do Bike in Newport in this awesome short video, produced by videographer/bicyclist/ethnographer Francesco Dragone.
The organizers of Black Girls Do Bike share what they have learned with their chapters nationwide:
* Women of color are underrepresented in the bicycling community – in terms of leadership, ridership, advocacy, media and business ownership.
* Riding a bicycle is addictive and empowering!
* Women of color are hungry for images that reflect them.
* Women of all shapes and sizes enjoy cycling and covering long distances on their bikes.
Our goal is to represent, empower, reflect, and ride!
For Giving Tuesday 2020 (on December 1), we’re raising funds for our Black Girls Do Bike Newport Chapter. Thanks to a generous (and super excited) supporter, all Giving Tuesday donations will be MATCHED in support of Black Girls Do Bike Newport!
Also on Giving Tuesday: BLM/BGDB gifts with your donation!
Anyone who donates $150 or more will receive a Black Lives Matter / Black Girls Do Bike Newport 2-sided lawn sign.
Anyone who donates $250 or more will receive the lawn sign AND a Black Lives Matter / Black Girls Do Bike Newport tote bag (while supplies last).
To support Black Girls Do Bike Newport, visit www.bikenewportri.org/donate. Thank you!!!