APPLETON, Wis. — Christ the King Lutheran Church is on a mission to continue helping Afghan refugees settle into their new homes.
With the help of more than a dozen church volunteers and by working with local businesses, they’re able to get some repurposed bikes to the family.
“We’ve talked about what would be helpful for the family, and bikes were something that came to mind,” Pastor Nate Gauerke of Christ is King Church said. “So we had conversations here with the bike shop and also with other people in the congregation.”
The owner of Active Bike and Fitness, Mark Fluette, helped pick out the donated bikes that fit each family member.
For many, a bike can be a way to have fun. But for the refugees, it might be the only way to get around.
“It’s a lot of families in need, there’s been refugees from all over the world, and a lot of those countries they come from, their main mode of transportation is a bicycle,” Fluette said. “So it’s familiar to them. It’s quick and easy for them and safe travel.”
A pair of wheels is one step closer to gaining independence as the family becomes used to life in America.
“[They need] street bikes, user friendly, utilitarian, hop on and go, get the kids to school, get dad to work type of stuff,” said Fluette. “That’s pretty much what I’m keeping in mind.”
The used bikes have been updated, upgraded and are ready for their new owners.
The church volunteers plan to gift the bikes along with all the needed safety gear.
“We’re all set to go,” Gauerke said. “We’re excited to bring these over and can’t wait to see the excitement that happens in their household and amongst their family members.”