The Bike Scouts Project is divided into four main components: Pathfinder Teams that are tasked with disaster response deployments, Central Dispatch that manages all teams and resources, Community Volunteer Teams that comprise the local community support teams of the Bike Scouts, and Bike Scouts Hero School membership that is open to the general public that would like to support and learn how to serve as Bike Scouts in their own community. Learn More About What We Do
Check out the Bike Scouts Deployments Archive! Includes all activities between 2013 – 2018.
At its core, The Bike Scouts Project is a community. We are a genuinely collaborative social network of people and organizations with a common interest in promoting and practicing social good and resilience in the communities that we live in. With active local teams based in many places across the Philippines, Bike Scouts engage, share, learn, and participate in the many things we do to build the sense of community that’s required to put human connectedness through technology to good use. As a community, the Bike Scouts work to help build a kinder and more resilient world through the many ripples of kindness that we help turn into a tidal wave of good. DOWNLOAD the latest Bike Scouts Primer as a PDF file. #wearebikescouts
BICYCLE ACCESS INITIATIVE
The Bike Scouts Bicycle Access Initiative is the latest flagship project in initial stages of planning, negotiations, and implementation. The Bike Scouts believe that for cycling to become a genuinely accepted form of mobility in urban areas of the Philippines the work has to start with engagement and education. We’ve started the work of collecting relevant and updated data about bicycle use and we are doing alternative bicycle route mapping, community engagement, consultation with City Government and community officials, and have established partnerships with local businesses, large corporations operating locally, schools, and transport organizations and companies. This effort is necessary to define the value for those that will be affected by the adoption of cycling by the city of San Pedro. In the next phase of the project, we will help create a city ordinance about the adoption of bicycles as a primary mode of mobility within the city that will provide the structure for implementation of the project. Finally, after a period of adjustment, the project will be completed with the launch of permanent infrastructure for cycling and other alternative forms of mobility. At present, the project outline has been endorsed by the City Council, we’ve also partnered with transportation companies, and we will soon be launching a simple Bike Share system and new bicycle access facilities at a major mall and at local business establishments.
The Bike Scouts Hero School program is the flagship academic initiative of The Bike Scouts Project, designed as a learning program focused on teaching organized communities such as schools and professional organizations how they can become their own Bike Scouts team that serve each other. The Hero School program is the only system that’s designed to turn groups of individual people into collaborative and effective teams that can function and achieve necessary goals. The basic premise of the Hero School program is that people will only work together for the common good in adverse situations when they have a deep sense of value for each other, such as it naturally happens in tight-knit communities. This is not necessarily the case in most places where people have to work or study together, and that can be the greatest weakness of any preparedness system. By providing a learning experience and opportunities to work together as a team, the Hero School program creates a strong sense of community among its participants that become the foundation for a genuinely effective emergency and disaster response system that teaches, involves, and engages even as it provides resilience and safety.
BICYCLE & LANTERN FESTIVAL
The Bicycle & Lantern Festival is the latest flagship project of The Bike Scouts Project. The first event was organized in the historic walled city of Intramuros in Manila, Philippines. The goal of the event is to promote awareness of the need to own a good source of light for emergency and disaster use. To achieve this, the event includes a paper-lantern-making workshop where they can make their own lanterns for the event and light it up using an LED flashlight. The theme of the event is “to shine a light on things that matter,” it reflects the importance of being aware of things that matter in the world like climate change or community-based disaster preparedness, but also to share the things that we know with others. The Bicycle & Lantern Festival incorporates the key elements of the Bike Scouts’ work that include bicycles, awareness, and community participation in disaster preparedness. The event is designed to be a community experience because the Bike Scouts project is a firm believer in the idea that it takes a community that’s fully-engaged and involved for people to be truly disaster-ready. The Bike Scouts’ work is based on the central idea that preparedness is only possible when people have developed a strong sense of value for each other, and that will only occur when there is a powerful experience that binds them into a real community.
THE 1,000KM RIDE
The 1,000Km Ride is an annual team ride of The Bike Scouts riding team to commemorate Typhoon Yolanda’s landfall in the Philippines, which is also the founding anniversary of The Bike Scouts Project. Every year, a Bike Scouts riding team sets out from Manila, or its home base of San Pedro, Laguna to ride through Laguna, Quezon, the Bicol Region, Samar, Leyte, and parts of Visayas, depending on the selected route for the year. One of the key elements of the 1,000Km Ride is the collection of letters from school children and others that the Bike Scouts team carry with it during the ride. The letters are documented, exhibited and then distributed at selected schools where the school children there can, in turn, write a reply, if they choose to. The letters are meant to be inspiring to the people that send and receive them. Written with the themes “Love, Courage, and Hope,” people who send letters can send out their wishes, wisdom, or hopes and dreams to people that need them, in the most meaningful way possible. The goal of these letters is to create a memory in people about the kindness of strangers, a human bond that will hopefully inform the world view of the people, especially the young, that the world can be as kind as we make it.
THE MIDNIGHT RIDE
The Midnight Ride is an annual community ride of the Bike Scouts held at midnight on Christmas Eve. Now on its fifth year, the purpose of the Midnight Ride is to deliver gifts to homeless children who live on the street with their families. The event provides Bike Scouts community members and volunteers a way to give back to their own communities, and helps remind them of the simplest reason why we ride as Bike Scouts. The most basic element of the event is the collection of donated food items, toys, clothes, and other things that can be wrapped as presents for distribution during the ride. One of the key things about the Midnight Ride is that it promotes the idea that it doesn’t take an expensive gift to give happiness to others, even the simplest gift can make a difference – especially at Christmas. Donated gift items are wrapped in community activity called the Midnight Ride Wrap Party, this is organized ahead of the ride itself. The Wrap Party also serves as the Christmas Party for the Bike Scouts, a way for volunteers and community members to catch up while continuing the work of the Bike Scouts. The Midnight Ride is also organized by Bike Scouts teams in other locations around the country, the ride has been featured in Rappler, Game Plan TV, and the GMA-7 Television Network Christmas Special. The Bike Scouts need donors and partners for this event.
THE BICYCLE LIBRARY PROJECT
The Bike Scouts Bicycle Library Project is the recipient of a generous donation of books from Canada-based partner READ Philippines. The Bicycle Library Project encompasses the mobile library and community library projects of the Bike Scouts in San Pedro, Laguna, Caramoan in Camarines Sur, and on Burias Island, Philippines. The goal of the Bicycle Library project is to make high-quality reading material for children available to as many communities as possible. From experience, the Bike Scouts has discovered that children will read books and participate in library-related creative activities like art and music if the facilities and materials are made available to them where they are most comfortable to enjoy the material and the activities. Because of this, the Bike Scouts uses its Goozam-donated cargo bicycle as a mobile library to bring the library to the children. In places like Caramoan and Burias Island, the initial book donations serve as the pilot project for what the Bike Scouts hope to expand to many other places. The Bicycle Library also serves as the educational component for the Bike Scouts Food Sustainability Garden project.
THE BIKE SCOUTS GARDEN PROJECT
The Bike Scouts Garden Project is part of the Food Sustainability initiative that’s designed to generate a practical source of experience and a platform for the application of knowledge about community-based food production. Advocating community-based disaster preparedness without addressing the obvious need for a sustainable and local food source would make the effort incomplete. Food is a basic need in the aftermath of storms and other natural disasters, everything else that people need are equally important but hunger and nutrition are things that often do not wait for a convenient time to address them. In many cases, the food that’s provided as part of aid are hardly nutritious because of the requirements of extended storage and transport. A core element of the project is the development of value for the community around the garden project sites. Bike Scouts is working to create an economic, recreational, and health benefit that will make local organic food production a viable activity for the community.
COMMUNITY RESILIENCE SURVEY
The Bike Scouts’ RESILIENCE SURVEY is an initiative to make drone and hazard mapping technology accessible to vulnerable communities across the Philippines that do not have the resources to collect and process local hazard data for disaster risk reduction. The hazard data that will be targeted by the initiative will focus on geologic information, historical data, terrain-specific risks such as flooding from rivers and landslides from high-angle terrain. This project is essential because there are countless unreported cases of potential threat that eventually evolve into actual disaster events.
The methodology includes the use of drones and high-resolution cameras for documentation of terrain from the air and on the ground. The material collected from the field work will be passed on to partners such as Project NOAH of the University of the Philippines and SRDP Consulting, a GIS and Engineering Consultancy firm with projects in many countries around the world. The processed data will be turned-over to the respective communities where they were collected, at no cost, for application to local disaster risk reduction measures. The turnover will include training for the front-end viewer of the data and its risk analysis capabilities. The raw data will be archived by Bike Scouts for future reference in disaster-related applications.
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