Entries tagged: Bicycle Alliance Of Washington

Washington Advocates Expand Safe Routes to School Concept to Parents and College Students

imageLast week, Camie talked to the folks at the Silicon Valley Bicycle Coalition about a new grant that will boost their Safe Routes to School activities. Just a few states to the north, the Bicycle Alliance of Washington is also enhancing its SRTS programming by expanding the concept to a new audience.

Thanks to a two-year grant from the Federal Highway Administration, the Bicycle Alliance is launching Go By Bike — an initiative that targets adult bicycle education at community colleges and elementary schools. According to the latest issue of the Bicycle Alliance newsletter, The Advocate, the program will:

  • Add 10 to 20 hours of bike safety and maintenance curriculum to existing physical education and health courses taught at community colleges in Central Puget Sound
  • Offer parent-education course at elementary schools
  • And provide a Web-based forum to augment both curricula

“In one of the programs, I’ll work directly with parents of students at two elementary schools to teach them safe bicycling, encourage bicycling and encourage them to bicycle with their children,” Josh Miller, an urban planning specialist who was hired to lead the program, explained. “In the other program, I’ll be working with four colleges to help them develop safe cycling courses. This will include collaborative curriculum development, assisting with institutionalizing bicycle education programs at each college and mentoring the teachers who will teach the courses.”

The Bicycle Alliance hopes the initiative will add a new dimension to proven programming and impact multiple generations of potential active commuters.

“By incorporating an adult element, Go By Bike will take Safe Routes to School to the next level,” Miller added. “It will go a long way toward getting parents to buy into the concept and trust their kids to bike responsibly.”

Stay tuned to the Bicycle Alliance blog or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) to learn more.

Winning Campaigns Training Energizes Advocates in the Pacific Northwest

Last week, 18 advocates met in beautiful - and sunny! - Seattle to align their biking and walking campaigns toward success. Twelve organizations, three states and two countries were represented, with participants traveling as far as 2,500 miles to attend the Alliance’s most recent Winning Campaigns Training.

The training was hosted by the Bicycle Alliance of Washington and facilitated by Dave Snyder, Executive Director of the California Bicycle Coalition... and me! I’ve been with the Alliance for just more than three months and this was my first time facilitating the workshop. It couldn’t have been better. Every step of the way, I was impressed by the creativity, enthusiasm, and dedication shared by everyone in the room.

University program managers, non-profit organizers, bike shop employees, planners, and engaged citizens brought their diverse perspectives together to develop campaigns for bike lanes, greenways, Safe Routes to School, 20-mph bills and Complete Streets policies.

The Alliance’s 2.5-day signature training uses proven curriculum targeted specifically to the unique needs and experience of bicycle and pedestrian advocates. They are intended for any potential campaign leader who would benefit from gaining the tools to craft and manage powerful advocacy campaigns. “This training breaks down complex efforts into small, doable pieces to promote implementation and action,” said Kathleen Ferrier from Walk San Diego.

“The greatest gift is time – for staff to dedicate to logically think thorough problems and solutions,” said Laura Koch, Program Director of the Community Cycling Center in Portland, OR. Laura attended the training with coworkers from CCC to develop a campaign for bike storage facilities at affordable housing units. “We walked out of the training with a much clearer road map,” she said.

The Alliance’s next Winning Campaigns Training will be held in Lansing, MI from July 26-28.  This training will mirror the curriculum of a traditional WCT, but will be specifically focused on campaigns that relate to Advocacy Advance, a partnership between the Alliance and the League of American Bicyclists aimed at doubling federal funding for bicycle and pedestrian projects by 2013. For more information about Advocacy Advance, click here.

This affordable training wouldn’t be possible without the generous support of our sponsors: Planet Bike, VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations, SRAM, Bikes Belong, AARP, Alta Planning + Design, Clif Bar, Team Estrogen, Sun Bicycles and Specialized.

Click here for pictures from Seattle!

Alliance Members Rally for the U.S. Bicycle Route System

imageOn May 2nd, advocates at the Adventure Cycling Association (ACA) launched the second annual fundraising campaign for the U. S. Bicycle Route System (USBRS), a proposed national network of bicycle routes, spanning multiple states.

Routes will connect U.S. cities, transportation hubs, scenic and historic destinations. Thirty states are currently working on the USBRS, and on May 11th, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) approved six new USBRS bicycle routes, the first to be established since 1982.

Driven by the success of the 2010 campaign, which raised more than $27,000 for the effort, ACA aims to raise $30,000 with the 2011 Build It. Bike It. Be a Part of It. campaign. ACA is not alone in its efforts: This year, several Alliance member organizations are teaming with the campaign as state partners. Participating groups include Bike Walk Tennessee, the Bicycle Alliance of Washington, Bike Utah, the South Dakota Bicycle Coalition, and the Bicycle Advocacy of Central Arkansas. The advocacy organizations act as allies to ACA’s fundraising efforts by promoting and raising money for the campaign. In return, each group will use a portion of the proceeds to support the creation of bicycle routes in their home states.

To gain some insight on our members’ involvement with the campaign, we spoke with the San Dakota Bicycle Coalition (SDBC). SDBC got involved with the ACA and the USBRS when Ginny Sullivan, Special Projects Director at the ACA, reached out to them via Facebook in the fall of 2009. “I’m an ACA member, so I was excited to connect with [Ginny] on the USBRS,” Jessica Giard, Board Vice President of SDBC, says. “We know SDBC members want cross-state routes, so this seems a good start in that direction.”

USBRS has already proven to be an asset to these advocates, and groups hope that it will continue to boost bicycle tourism within their respective states. “Tourism is a top industry in South Dakota, and we see more possibility for bicycle travel in the industry,” Giard says. “Bicycle travel is one of the coalition’s initiatives. Developing the USBRS in South Dakota plays hugely in validating bicycle tourism.”

While USBRS is still in its infancy in several states, advocates believe that it will continue to be a powerful tool for the bicycling movement. “It’s early yet in the South Dakota route development, but, thankfully, the coalition has a good connections within our state DOT,” Giard says. “I see this effort as nothing but positive for bicycling in our state.”

The campaign runs through May 31st and has raised more than $14,000 as of May 24th. Looking to help the campaign reach its $30,000 goal? Donate to the campaign here. Click here to help spread the word and be sure to follow the efforts for the USBRS campaign on its Facebook page.

Washington Advocates Extend their Reach with Hub & Spoke Program

imageFor statewide organizations, outreach can be a stretch. It tough to extend programming to the entire population, to recruit new members or wage campaigns in distant or dispersed communities. With the help of a $12,500 Advocacy Advance grant from the Alliance for Biking & Walking last spring, the Bicycle Alliance of Washington is finding ways to navigate this difficult terrain with its Hub & Spoke program.

“It can be challenging to maintain a statewide presence in a state that is over 70,000 square miles and is divided by a mountain range,” says Louise McGrody, the BAW’s outreach and communications staffer. “The Hub & Spoke tour has been an excellent vehicle for regional outreach. The events are social by design, held at pubs and restaurants, so attendees have an opportunity to network with each other and with us.”

Each gathering is part discussion, part presentation. And timing is key. Hub & Spoke events coincide with meetings of the Transportation Improvement Board, an independent state agency that distributes and manages street construction and maintenance grants to 320 cities and urban counties throughout Washington State. So the goal isn’t just to recruit new members. Hub & Spoke aims to galvanize residents to draw down some of those TIB state dollars to benefit cyclists and pedestrians in their local communities.

“We spend time reviewing our legislative and program priorities, feature a couple of local efforts, and explain the purpose of the Transportation Improvement Board and highlight what funding this entity has for biking and walking projects,” Louise says of the events. “Every Hub & Spoke event has also been attended by a state Department of Transportation staffer. The floor is then opened to attendees ask questions and tell us what’s on their minds.”

The two-pronged approach is hitting the mark. In 2010, Hub & Spoke visited Wenatchee, Vancouver, Walla Walla and Everett and averaged 35 attendees per event. Cyclists seem to appreciate the Alliance’s willingness to court potential members on their home turf and enjoy getting educated on the issues in a laid-back setting.

“Feedback to Hub & Spoke has been extremely positive,” Louise says. “Attendees are appreciative that the Bicycle Alliance is visiting various communities around Washington State and they have found the discussions informative and helpful.”

Next stop in 2011? The Hub & Spoke tour will travel to Olympia on January 27. Stay tuned to the BAW blog for more updates.

Posted by Carolyn S on January 12, 2011
Tags: statewide organizations, hub & spoke, bicycle alliance of washington, advocacy advance
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2011 Winning Campaigns Trainings Announced

imageIt’s impossible to capture even a hint of the energy and inspiration of an Alliance Winning Campaigns Training in a newsletter or blog post. Over the past few months, as we wrapped up our 2010 series, we tried to give you a taste, by sharing the rave reviews of amped-up participants. But short testimonials don’t do the workshop justice. You’ve got to experience it yourself to understand the impact.

In 2011, we’re giving you six opportunities to jumpstart your next winning campaign with the guidance of our expert facilitators and the assistance of your bike-ped peers.

In 2010, the Alliance hosted its three-day trainings in six cities across North America. In total, the workshops drew 117 advocates from a wide array of organizations. By working through the workshop’s curriculum, those participants tweaked or launched 59 different campaigns to boost biking and walking in their communities.

Now that it’s a new year, it’s time for a new round of trainings. So save the date for a 2011 Winning Campaigns Training in your area:

  • April 1-3: Hosted by the Iowa Bicycle Coalition, Davenport, IA
  • May 20-22: Hosted by Bike Maryland, in Baltimore, MD
  • June 3-5: Hosted by the Bicycle Alliance of Washington, in Seattle, WA
  • August 26-28: Hosted by the League of Michigan Bicyclists, in Lansing, MI
  • October 14-16: Hosted by the Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, in Los Angeles, CA
  • November 4-6: Hosted by the Palmetto Cycling Coalition, in Columbia, SC

Registration for each training is already open; click here to reserve your spot.

imageLike 2010, we’re happy to announce a measure of friendly regional competition for 2011, too. The host organization that draws the MOST participants to its training in 2011 will win a free international getaway from VBT Bicycling and Walking Vacations that they can raffle off or use as a fundraiser.

In 2010, Local Motion in Burlington, Vermont, packed their Winning Campaign Training with attendees and narrowly edged out the good folks in Oakland for the free bicycling trip to Italy valued at $3,500. “This goes to show that small communities can make BIG impacts,” Adele Dienno, Local Motion’s event’s coordinator, says of the organization’s win. “Thanks to all those who came from as far away as Nova Scotia; to VBT and its president, Gregg Martson; and to the Alliance and our presenters, Jeremy Grandstaff and Ron Milam.”

Who will take home the 2011 prize? Register now for a training near you.

Apply for Strategic Planning Assistance by January 31

imageIn 2010, funding from New Belgium Brewing Company allowed us to offer strategic planning assistance to four member organizations. In 2011, continued support from the generous, bike-loving, beer company will allow us to expand this offering to two more organizations.

The Whole System Strategic Planning approach brings together organization stakeholders to establish a shared, clear, and compelling vision - and guides those stakeholders to craft a set of specific actions to achieve that vision. The results are transformational: increased buy-in from the organization’s stakeholders; clearly defined and prioritized actions for moving forward; and an energized commitment to the organization’s future.

imageJust ask the folks at the Bicycle Alliance of Washington. The Seattle-based organization was among the groups selected for assistance during the competitive application process in 2010. Barbara Culp, the group’s executive director, says the BAW is already seeing improvements. “The Strategic Planning process has positively changed how we do business in the office, and the board of directors, staff and membership are eager for the planning summit this spring to help clarify and focus the organization to meet the ever-shifting bicycle advocacy movement,” she says.

Is your organization struggling because you lack a compelling or widely held vision? Are you looking for ways to increase your volunteers or membership? Do you want to engage new audiences in your work? Are you interested in revisiting your current strategy? If you answered “Yes” to any of those questions, your organization could be a winning candidate for strategic planning assistance. The service, valued at $5,000, is being offered at no cost, thanks to New Belgium’s support.

The Alliance will be accepting applications through January 31, 2011. Click here for more information and to download the application. For questions about or guidance with your application, contact Jeremy Grandstaff, Member Services Director, at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)