A local program is giving kids with disabilities bicycles they can ride their way.
“Bike For Kids Idaho” is a family support program that helps supply what they call adaptable bikes for special needs children.
An adaptable bicycle looks and functions like any other bike, but it has built-in support features to help riders sit and pedal themselves independently.
Learning to ride a bicycle is a childhood milestone.
“I like to ride with my mom and dad,” said 5-year-old Mikayla.
For kids like Mikayla, who might need a little extra help riding on their own, that’s where these adaptable bikes come into the picture.
“They can enjoy bike riding with their friends and family and experience the freedom and independence they deserve,” said Kristy Mickelsen, director of Bike For Kids Idaho.
At first glance these bikes look like any other, but mechanics at Bill’s Bike Shop in Idaho Falls add the features that make them work.
“What we do is we can take a bike that’s a standard two-wheel bike and then put training wheels or adaptive wheels on it that help with balance,” said Tyson Scott, mechanic.
These wheels are what help 8-year-old Jackson ride around town and his mom said the bike has helped her son in many ways.
“Besides him being so happy, his confidence and his freedom, it’s a normal activity he can do with other typical kids,” said Jackson’s mom, Maegan Tsantis.
So far, Bikes for Kids Idaho has supplied dozens of local-area children with bikes and they hope to continue doing it.
This program relies entirely on community donations and fundraising. An adaptable bike can cost anywhere between $400 to $16,000.
Bike For Kids Idaho is hosting an event Saturday to help raise money to buy more bikes for kids with special needs.
For more information on the event, or to donate, visit http://www.bikeforkidsidaho.com/