When public transport was suspended, a group of cyclists was quick to think of a solution for health workers who suddenly found themselves without transportation to take them to work.
The group of cyclists set up Life Cycles PH right after the quarantine was announced.
“Life Cycles PH aims to bring bikes to our front-liners who have no other means to get to work,” said Keisha Mayuga who, along with transport advocates and friends, founded Life Cycle PH.Health workers can borrow the bikes for free. The community operates on an honesty system. “We accept donations through Life Cycles PH page so we purchase bikes and donate them directly to institutions. We also opened a Facebook group, Life Cycles Community, where bike lenders and borrowers nearby can match up and make the exchange,” Mayuga said.
To meet the demands, people have either volunteered to lend their bikes or donated in cash. (Check their Facebook page to learn more about the lending/borrowing system.)As of March 25, Life Cycles PH has raised almost P1.4 million, delivered 242 bikes to institutions, and matched 220 lenders and borrowers. Its Facebook page says there are now more than 462 bikes on the road. Collectively, Life Cycles PH delivered more than 570 bikes to the front-liners in less than two weeks.
“We now have 2,700 members, 322 borrowers and 69 lenders. All kinds of bikes are available, from folding and MTB to road bikes and easy riders,” said Ann Angala, one of the members of Life Cycles PH.
Life Cycle PH matches the height of the borrower and location. One time, Angala recalled, the group had to match a bike for a 4’11” front-liner in Sta. Ana. They could not find one to match her petite frame in Sta. Ana.
“I found one in White Plains, but ’di naman kami makalusot sa checkpoints. That was frustrating. We ended up delivering the bike to another lady in Philippine Children’s Medical Center, which was good too,” Angala said.The demand for bicycles is so high, she said, that a post on an available unit on Facebook would get up to four inquiries.
“It is heartbreaking to have someone beg for a bike to borrow because he or she walks from home to their place of work for four to five hours daily. But you can only do so much,” Angala said. “Since we took the advocacy further, we have delivered bikes to hospitals and homes of health workers.”
Bikes donated are sanitized. Lenders are also encouraged to sanitize their bikes.
Donations are welcome. Anyone with an extra bike can lend it, or offer cash (one bike is approximately P5,000). Helmets and locks are also welcome. INQ