It’s fascinating to watch messages “go viral” on Front Porch Forum. Recently, a member posted her note about some returned Peace Corps volunteers and their effort to collect used bicycles for people in poor countries… just these few sentences…
Clean out your garage, help others, and get an IRS tax deduction! The Green Mountain Returned Peace Corps Volunteers are collecting used bikes in working condition for PEDALS FOR PROGRESS.
Pedals for Progress will ship your bike(s) to an international partner organization, where it will be reconditioned as transportation to people who desperately need affordable, non-polluting transportation! (A $10 donation toward shipping is requested. Also accepting portable sewing machines in working condition.)
PLEASE BRING YOUR BIKES TO: Lake Champlain Chocolates Warehouse (444 Pine St, Burlington) between 9am-1pm on Saturday, September 22
In the past ten days I’ve seen the message repeated in about 24 30 FPF neighborhood forums reaching thousands of households! That’s a great outreach effort by the folks working on this project. They sent their announcement to their list of local contacts and ask each of them to post on their own neighborhood forum. Also, someone along the line posted it on the FPF Neighborhood Volunteer Forum and that reached 250 local community organizer types, and many of them are passing on the message.
I’m eager to see what kind of turn out they get!
UPDATE: The Burlington Free Press reports today (9/23/07) that this event broke the previous record by hauling in 276 bikes with dozens as of yet processed and counted. Great news. The Free Press article does a good job of describing the whole story, although it failed to mention how the volunteer group succeeded so fabulously in getting the word out. Congratulations to the organizers!