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Bikes help to give hope to Bradford addicts
Recovering drug addicts are patching up stolen and wrecked bikes donated by police to aid their own rehabilitation.
The project is part of a recycle and cycle initiative between police and Bridge, Bradford’s biggest drugs charity. In the last two months, 12 bikes have been handed to the charity in various states of disrepair and have been mended to the point they can be reused.
Jon Royle, the chief executive of the Bridge, said that a workshop based at the charity headquarters in Salem Street was used by volunteers to fix the bikes and helped give them a structure as they recovered from addiction.
“We have a group who come along and make the bikes as good as new,” he said.
“It has been running two months and we will either donate the bikes or donate them to other charities. It is really good because some of those participants at one time would be out there pinching bikes and shoplifting and this gives them something useful to do with their time. They are interested in learning some new skills. They work on the bikes and fix them up and also see the benefits of recycling.
“We have got the support from the police, and they are not just detecting and preventing crime, they are helping in a more direct way and are helping us provide a better service.
“It is very important because we provide treatment services for clients recovery and this is alot more than that. We are helping people get a sense of self worth and they feel they are doing something useful.”
Inspector Vicky Lawrance of the City Ward Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “We realised that there were a number of seized bikes where their original owners could not be identified. These had been recovered following thefts, burglaries or during our proactive policing operations. Rather than leaving the bikes within our property stores, we decided to put them to good use and approached the Bridge Project.
“The bikes will provide a focus for those aiming to achieve rehablitation from drugs, encouraging them to learn new skills.”