Anyone can be a Bike Scout! It’s easy, you just have to sign-up for our Facebook Group Page and you’re in! Bike Scouts does not charge any membership fees or other forms of monetary requirements. All you have to do is join the regular conversations on our group page and chat. However, if you’d like to do more by having your own Bike Scouts team in your area it would be even more awesome, and yes, it’s all for free! Welcome to Bike Scouts, thank you for being a part of the community. #wearebikescouts #thisiswhyweride
STEP 1: Build Your Team
It’s great to have you in the community but it’s even better if you can invite your family, friends, neighbors, and others in your community that have an interest in doing more while riding bicycles! All you need in the beginning is a small group. It’s good if you can find a friend to join you, but even better if you can find ten or even more to join your Bike Scouts team by signing up for the official Bike Scouts Facebook Group. There are no requirements and you won’t have any obligations, don’t worry. The main purpose for growing the membership of the Bike Scouts that are local to the communities were they ride (or even if they don’t ride bicycles, it’s perfectly fine!) is because one of the main goals of the Bike Scouts is to be able to connect to a network of local teams that can monitor and document natural disasters and other challenges in their communities as they happen. We track typhoons in the Philippines, for example, from the moment it makes landfall to the point of exit because this is only way that we can truly be able to respond to any need for help or assistance in our communities. If you have questions please feel free to post them on our group page, we’d be very happy to answer them!
STEP 2: Meet Your Team
This part is a simple meet-up, there’s no need to be fancy but if you prefer to organize snacks for everyone we’re sure nobody will complain! The purpose of this meet-up is to get to meet members of your team that you don’t know yet, it’s also the perfect opportunity to talk about what Bike Scouts is. To make it very simple, the Bike Scouts is a social platform for people who want to do awesome things, big and small, that help people or make a difference in the world. Bike Scouts is not a club, we don’t have a president or officers that will tell you what to do. Instead, Bike Scouts works as a network of support for the things that you or your team members identify in your community to be something that needs to be changed or made better. Take Bike Scouts Borongan in Eastern Samar, for example, in their effort to establish Borongan City as a bicycle-friendly place the Bike Scouts community connected them to experts in bicycle mobility from Denmark and with other cities and organizations around the country that can provide them with know-how, technical advice, and other forms of support. The Bike Scouts works the same way for your team.
IT’S IMPORTANT to clarify at the beginning that Bike Scouts is NOT a search and rescue organization. We are a global community that makes the sharing of knowledge and resources possible when and where it’s needed. We do have a technical response team called the Pathfinder Team, but participation in this kind of work requires training, certification, and experience. We organize regular training and qualification courses every year for anyone who wants to join the deployment team. However, we do recommend being more active in the community aspect of Bike Scouts as that is where we actually make the most difference!
STEP 3: Activate and Engage Your Team
This is the most important part of being a Bike Scouts team. Once you’ve found the right group of people that will make up your local Bike Scouts team we recommmend that you organize regular meet-ups and rides, the meet-ups are for those who don’t or can’t ride bicycles (PWDs, for example) and the rides are for those who do ride bicycles and can help develop familiarity with your own community. It’s a good thing to let your own community that there is a Bike Scouts team present. We usually do this by doing rides or activities that benefit the community, it could be something that involves teaching kids to ride, distributing food for the less fortunate, or organizing a fun event that everyone can join – it’s up to you what works best for your area. It would be really awesome if you and your team can post regular updates about your community. It doesn’t have to be about important things, it could be about your ride to work or a new coffeeshop that opened – everything you share adds to the knowledge of the community about the places where we serve.
THE REAL WORK happens is when there are natural disasters or even everyday challenges that affect your community. It’s important for every Bike Scout and all Bike Scouts teams to develop the habit of documenting these events and sharing them with the community by posting it on our Photo Sharing Map so that the entire Bike Scouts community will know where we can all pitch in and help if something needs to be done.
That’s it, that’s all there is to it. It’s not complicated and it’s supposed to be fun! If you have other questions or suggestion please feel free to post them on our Facebook Group page so that we can start a conversation and see what we can do together to make things happen. Welcome to Bike Scouts!