Dear Lose the Training Wheels Bike Camp Volunteers,
Thanks so much for your support of the Lose the Training Wheels Bike Camp. If you interested in volunteering to help out at the camp, below is this year’s camp information. Also attached is a camp brochure and a volunteer registration form. Please pass along this information to anyone who might be interested in helping out.
The Lose the Training Wheels Bike Camp is a one week bike camp for individuals with development disabilities to learn to independently ride a two-wheel bike – without training wheels. The camp is a partnership between Marshall University’s College of Health Professions and the non-profit charity iCanShine. This year’s Lose the Training Wheels Bike camp is scheduled for June 5-9 at the Huntington YMCA Phil Cline Center (917 9th St, Huntington, WV 25701). We are hoping that the earlier date will lead to less conflict with family vacation schedules, and allow the riders to have more of the summer to practice their new skills!
The role of the volunteer generally is to be a “spotter” for the rider and to provide encouragement and support and they gradually progress from using the specialized adaptive equipment provided by the iCanShine coaches to riding on a two-wheel bike. Instruction will be provided on spotting technique and volunteers will be matched with riders.
At this point we have five scheduled sessions for campers (or volunteers) to register for. The campers attend one 75-minute session for five consecutive days. As a volunteer, you can help out for one session per day, or multiple sessions. It is helpful if you volunteer for the same session each day, so you can develop trust and rapport with your rider. The session times are:
Volunteers should arrive 15 minutes before the session start time each day as we spend the first 15 minutes of each session having a volunteer meeting to discuss goals and techniques for spotting each rider. As a reminder, please wear comfortable clothes (shorts, t-shirt and sneakers) and note that open-toe shoes are not permitted.
Volunteers should plan to attend the orientation and volunteer training meeting on Sunday June 4 from 4-5pm at the Huntington YMCA Phil Cline Center (917 9th St, Huntington, WV 25701). The first 30 minutes of the orientation will be an overview of the bike program and how the camp operates as well as a Q&A session. The final 30 minutes of the orientation will be used to train the volunteers on proper spotting technique and safety measures. However, it is fine if they still volunteer even if they are unable to make it to the orientation session, or if they can’t make it to the camp all five days. We could use all the help we can get, especially in the last few days when the riders really get going and and the spotters might be really running! If you are unable to walk or run with a rider, we could still use your help in any capacity, such as making sure our riders stay hydrated, making sure helmets are properly fastened, and cheering the riders on!
Thanks again for your continued support of our amazing riders!