Winnipeg, MB: Starting at noon on Saturday, December 12th and going until noon the following day, dozens of volunteer mechanics from across the city will come together at an old church at 1609 Elgin Ave West for a 24 hour kids bike building marathon. The goal: to turn trailers full of kids bikes recuperated from the Brady landfill and turn them into 350+ Christmas presents for kids in need, all the while raising $15,000 to provide bicycle programming for Winnipeg youth.
Kirstie Lindsay, Executive Director of WRENCH commented on the positive community impacts the event has. “We coordinate with 20 different day cares, schools and social agencies in the inner city to help get these bikes out to kids who otherwise would not have one to ride. It’s a tremendous community effort. A lot of work, but the benefits are priceless.” This year for the first time, bikes will also be sent out of the city to some remote First Nation communities through a partnership with the Southeast Resource Development Council Corp.
For the past three years, The WRENCH and Emterra Environmental have also formed a partnership to ensure that the restored bicycles get to where they are supposed to go in time for the holiday season. Like Santa’s elves, Emterra loads the newly fixed-up bikes into company pickups and delivers them to the participating organizations. Over the past three years, Emterra has delivered 1,170 bikes.
This year, Emterra went a big step further. When The WRENCH was having trouble finding a new location to hold the event, John Sitarek, Emterra’s Winnipeg operations manager offered up his own home. John and his family live in a converted church that has an open space large enough to host the event. This weekend, the WRENCH volunteers will congregate at John’s home to do their Cycle of Giving bicycle magic.
“Emterra Environmental has a 'recycle first' philosophy meaning we'll do everything we can to recycle as much as we can before disposing of anything in landfill. That's why The WRENCH's Cycle of Giving is a natural fit for us. Restoring discarded bicycles to give to kids at this time of the year gives the bikes a second life and helps the kids be kids. We're very proud to be a partner in this project,” Sitarek said.
The Cycle of Giving was first organized in 2011 and has been growing every year. Last year, Cycle of Giving provided a record 365 kids with their very own bicycles, just two weeks before Christmas.
About WRENCH: The WRENCH is a Winnipeg-based registered charity that makes bicycles and cycling available to the public by providing programming, education and resources for community members, groups and organizations; supporting and promoting bicycle use within the city and; supporting new and existing community bike shops. Their mission is to create stronger, healthier communities by removing barriers to building, repairing and maintaining bicycles – with a focus on educating youth. Last year, Cycle of Giving provided 365 kids with their very own bicycles, just two weeks before Christmas.
About Emterra Group: Emterra Environmental is a division of Emterra Group, a Canadian leader in waste resources management. A family owned and operated company, Emterra comprises four divisions – Emterra Environmental, Emterra Environmental USA, Emterra Tire Recycling, Canadian Liquids Processors Limited -- offering municipal and industrial, commercial and institutional (ICI) customers with a fully integrated approach to collecting, processing and marketing waste, recyclables, organic waste, used tires, and more. Emterra has operations in British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, and Michigan, USA, and annually ships about 500,000 tonnes of recyclables to end-markets to be re-manufactured into new products.
Driven by its mandate to increase the sustainability of its operations, Emterra is one of Canada’s most progressive users of alternative green fleet technologies in the waste management industry and consistently deploys the latest green technologies to truly “walk the talk”, including using compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles and fuelling stations and operating optical sorting equipment in its recycling plants. These vehicles reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 20% and run as much as 90% quieter compared to diesel-fuelled engines, substantially cutting noise pollution in residential areas. Over their years of service in Winnipeg, these trucks will help cut carbon emissions by nearly 10,000 tonnes, which is the equivalent of taking over 2,080 typical passenger vehicles off the road for an entire year. This will contribute significantly to cleaner air in Winnipeg and in the province. It is Emterra’s way of contributing to the City of Winnipeg’s 2009 greenhouse-gas emissions reductions target of 20% over 10 years. Emterra’s CNG fleet alone would contribute nearly 20% of the City’s goal to reduce 54,624 tonnes of carbon dioxide by 2019.
VP of Corporate Strategy and Business Development
905.336.9084, ext. 130