Description/achievement of initiative
Establish a network of collaborative community-based Volunteer Bicycle Messenger teams serving their own communities for disaster preparedness, response, social good participation, and in achieving UN SDG goals.
Volunteer Bicycle Messenger teams help save lives and provide hope and resilience by providing an alternative means of communication, information and support in the aftermath of natural disasters when traditional means of communication become unavailable and roads are inaccessible.
Volunteer Bicycle Messengers make lives better by using bicycles to access places that are in most need of quality education, data for community resilience, and social good for the less fortunate and the vulnerable.
The backbone of The Bike Scouts Project is the development of its community teams network, the idea behind the Bike Scouts is to localize the leadership, membership, and implementation of the Bike Scouts core principles, objectives, and projects. The most important part of forming local teams is organizing a Bike Scouts membership workshop that's called Hero School where volunteers or community members learn how they can use bicycles in tandem with portable technology like mobile apps to serve their own communities as Volunteer Bicycle Messengers or Bike Scouts.
Hero School includes the basic members orientation, bicycle skills training on maintenance and road safety for cyclists, basic life-saving skills including CPR and AED operation, how to use technologies such as UAVs to support community resilience and preparedness, and a primer on organizing community projects related to cycling, disaster preparedness, and social good.
Hero School focuses on community engagement and team dynamics because we believe that the only way to get people genuinely involved in anything is to help them gain a strong sense of community around what they need to accomplish. For the Bike Scouts, the goal is to develop an awareness of the value of bicycles for community participation that leads to involvement in bigger things. Hero School and Community Team membership is the foundation for large-scale participation in the Bike Scouts community-based disaster response.
As a unique approach to disaster response with a focus on communication and data, the main objective of Bike Scouts that serve as Volunteer Bicycle Messengers in the aftermath of natural disasters is to bridge the gap in communications that isolate people and communities. We accomplish this by using bicycles to access remote places and areas severely affected by disasters to gather personal messages and information from survivors and evacuees that we post to the web using satellite access to the internet, where the data and information becomes available to their families outside the disaster area and to aid and rescue agencies that may require information about where they can be most effective.
The success of the Bike Scouts community teams can be measured in the volume of recruitment and level of participation, while the success of the Volunteer Bicycle Messengers for disaster response can be measured with the volume of data collected and the number of people provided with the Bike Scouts unique bicycle messenger service for disaster response.
Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer
Bike Scouts is designed to be localized through its network of community-based teams. All knowledge, skills, and resources are shared from the very beginning of engagement through the Hero School project where all members and volunteers start by learning how they can be Bike Scouts and how they can contribute to the Bike Scouts community and the network. Hero School is designed to be a starting point and a platform for continuous training, education, collaboration, and sharing for all members of the Bike Scouts community and volunteer network.
Coordination mechanisms/governance structure
The Bike Scouts Project is governed through a central dispatch composed of core volunteers that perform the work of management, community engagement, media production, training, and general administration. The implementation of projects and initiatives are done in collaboration with local Bike Scouts teams who "localize" projects depending on specific needs in their areas, with the support and assistance of the central dispatch and other community teams that can provide relevant support. Almost all coordination take advantage of digital platforms such as social media and work group platforms.
The Bike Scouts Project