In 2015, when a local bicycle factory closed, philanthropist and entrepreneur Michael Herman acquired $150,000 worth of high-tech bike parts, promising that they would be put to good use within the community. He then began recovering bicycles from eco-centers and private citizens, restoring them with new parts and returning them – free of charge – to children via the elementary & high school system.
But that was just the beginning. By joining forces with Stéphane Marcoux, a pro-cyclist and recreational therapist who works with children and adults on the Autistic Spectrum or with intellectual disabilities, Michael expanded the reach of his initiative to include at-risk youths and young adults with special needs. Stephan quickly brought on board Myriam de Clausel de Coussergues, a specialized educator with extensive experience working with youth and adolescents with specials needs. Together with a dedicated Board of Directors, including Brian Herman, Anne Stairs, Sharon Dawe and Louise Penny – Freewheeling was born.
For more detailed information, please read our summary document (PDF 1MB).