Kids claim new bikes in exchange for service work

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- Children riding their bikes around the neighborhood is a sure sign of summer and on Saturday some North Omaha kids got the chance to sample life in motion.

Rows of bicycles were lined up at the Charles Drew Health Center lighting-up young faces. Say Paw’s two boys were among them. The family spent 10 years living in a refugee camp in Thailand before coming to the United States and Saturday was a gift.

“When we lived in the camp we didn't even have a chance to go outside and ride a bike," Paw said.

Her sons, like all the other children getting bikes, earned their way to the reward through acts of service. Paw’s youngest helped plant a garden and he’s thrilled about the bicycle, “because I love it."

As for why he loves it, he figures that once he gets the hang of it, it’s going to be pretty speedy. "I love it because it's so fast."

Say Paw says her boys would have never had this experience back in Thailand.

“In here we have a freedom to go around and ride a bike and also we have opportunity. The bike is given to us. In Thailand there's no opportunity like that."

And helping to create this opportunity are people at the Charles Drew Health Center. This is their eighth year giving away bikes.

CEO Kenny McMorris said, “Charles Drew has been in this community for 38 years and this is one way we pay it forward. We support our families, we support our kids and recognizing that physical activity is very important is very important to their overall health and well-being."

For Say Paw, watching her boys being active, healthy, and happy is about as much as she could ask for.

“My two boys are so happy and excited to be getting their bikes and as a mother I'm very happy as well."

There were approximately 150 bikes given out Saturday along with helmets and locks.

Kids get new bikes