Bike Host

Bike Host is an exciting free program that matches up newcomers to Canada who are open to cycling with friendly Canadian resident mentors who cycle regularly. You'll go on a community tour, take a basic bike maintenance class, learn how to cycle safely on the street, and enjoy an international potluck picnic with your new friends. 

I am a newcomer, tell me more
You need to be comfortable riding a bike, and willing to commit to about 30 hours of fun activities throughout the summer. If you don't own a bike and can't afford to buy one, we can help with the cost.
You'll get
- a friendly bike mentor
- a safe cycling class
- a fun community tour (by bike)
- lights and a bell if you need them
- a bike maintenance class
- a fun ride to the location of your choosing with your mentor (work, grocery store, kids school, it's up to you!)
- a fun, family-friendly international potluck picnic

I'm interested in being a mentor
Mentors have the option of pursuing their Can-Bike Instructor certification for FREE. You must be 18 years of age or older, confident cycling on roads, and willing to commit to about 30 hours of volunteer activities over the summer.
You'll also get
- friends from new and interesting backgrounds
- a safe cycling class
- a fun community tour (by bike)
- lights and a bell if you need them
- a bike maintenance class
- fun rides with your mentees to places that are useful to them (their work, the grocery store, etc.)
- the satisfaction of helping people in need adjust to life in Canada

What about my kids?
Children 7 and over who can ride a bike are welcome! We'll have a kids bike rodeo set up for the little ones (ages 7 - 11). Kids age 12 and over are welcome to join the adults in the safe cycling and maintenance classes and get their hands greasy. Financial assistance is also available to purchase kids bikes for mentee families in need. Children of all ages are welcome at the family picnic.

Where will this happen?
In the Bayshore and Ledbury-Heron Gate-Ridgemont-Elmwood communities, both in Ottawa. Precise locations to be announced.

When will it happen?
The program will run in July and August with events taking place on summer weekends and weekday afternoons and evenings.

Bayshore events will be as follows:
- July 25, 3 - 6 pm
- August 8, all day
- August 26th, 4 - 7 pm
... view the Bayshore 'calendar of events' here.

Herongate events are currently scheduled for:
- Wednesday, August 5 (bike safety training for Mentees) from 3pm to 5pm and from 6pm to 8pm (choose one or the other time); there is also a 'meet-and-greet' in Herongate for Mentors and Mentees on August 5th from 5pm to 6pm, at the Heron Road Community Centre, located at 1480 Heron Rd, Ottawa, ON  K1V 6A5. If you have any questions, please phone Trevor at 613-789-0604.

Bike Host was created by Culture Link and the Toronto Cycling Think and Do Tank, and is generously supported by grants from the Community Foundation of Ottawa, the Ottawa Sustainability Fund, the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Adam and Rachel Fund, Safer Roads Ottawa, Canada Summer Jobs, Citizens for Safe Cycling, and the Healthy Transportation Coalition.

Click here to read a report about the Bike Host program in 2015, and what BioRegional North America was able to accomplish thanks to the MiniGrant it received from the Healthy Transportation Coalition.