Cycling Without Age Southwark
Helping older people 'feel the wind in their hair'
Local older people taking the air in trishaws is a regular sight in the parks and streets around Rotherhithe and Bermondsey these days. Since 2015, we’ve been running a branch of the international Cycling Without Age (CWA) initiative.
This is one of the largest and longest running CWA projects in the UK, and the only ‘chapter’ in central London.
Cycling Without Age is a movement started in Denmark in 2012 by Ole Kassow. Ole wanted to help the elderly get back on their bicycles, but he had to find a solution to their limited mobility. The answer was a trishaw, and he started offering free bike rides to local nursing home residents. Volunteers (pilots) sign up for bike rides with the elderly as often or as rarely as they can. It’s a great way to stay fit and healthy outdoors, to give something back to your community, to get to know new people, and to have fun!
More than 200 chapters around the world offer Cycling Without Age from well over 1,000 trishaws – and the numbers are still growing. More than 6,000 pilots ensure that the elderly get out of their nursing homes, on the bikes, and enjoying the fresh air and local surroundings.
How it works
Volunteer pilots take out isolated and frail older people from residential care and sheltered accommodation, piloting them on three-wheeled rickshaws through local parks and open spaces, so they can experience the outdoors, meet new people, and build relationships. Along the way, everyone has the chance to chat, share stories and make connections they might not otherwise have the chance to make.
Nobody is just a ‘passenger’ – everyone is ‘in the driving seat’, and whether you’re pedalling or not, everybody contributes. Cycling Without Age offers people in Rotherhithe and Bermondsey the opportunity to build new friendships and links to their community.
We’re always recruiting experienced cyclists who would like to volunteer to get involved. We have three trishaw bikes and are always looking to expand our number of riders and pilots. Get in touch now and we’ll get you on board!Click here to volunteer