Denver7 | Gives


These Denver elementary school kids have the best day ever with new bikes thanks to Denver7 Gives

For many of these kids, it was their first set of wheels, made possible by our Denver7 community.
Posted: 10:35 PM, May 22, 2024
Updated: 2024-06-13 13:51:53-04
brown bike bus update.png

DENVER — Among the cheers of kids on the playground working out the end-of-school day energy were the sounds of several very happy Brown International Academy students who were having one of the best days of their lives.

One by one, they heard their name called. First, they stepped up to grab a helmet and then turned to catch a first glimpse of their very own bike.

For many of these kids, it was their first set of wheels, made possible by our Denver7 community.It’s a precious gift, not just in the form of two wheels, but in the joy that comes with being included with the other kids.

In December, Denver7 took viewers along on the Brown Bike Bus. It’s one of the first-of-its-kind of rides in Denver where kids, parents and volunteers meet before class and roll together to start the school day.

Brown Bike Bus meets at two separate locations, one of which is close to Sloan Lake. To the soundtrack of kids’ laughter, bike bells and catchy tunes, the riders on the Brown Bike Bus roll the 10 blocks down 25th Avenue to class.

The benefits of exercise and camaraderie have not been lost on organizers of Brown Bike Bus, but it was clear one thing was missing: More of the other students.

brown bike bus.png
Just before Christmas, Denver7 introduced the concept of Brown Bike Bus, a rolling band of happy Brown International Academy students who meet at Sloan’s Lake Park and ride together around 10 blocks to start the school day.

Allen Cowgill, an avid Denver-area cyclist whose wife, Kristin, is an occupational therapist at Brown International Academy, organizes and helps Brown Bike Bus run smoothly.

“About 20% of our kids today are free and reduced lunch and don't have access to a bicycle, or don't own a bicycle,” said Cowgill. “So something that we're working on and we're struggling with is how do we get bicycles to those kids.”

With that mission in mind, Denver7 Gives launched a campaign to raise money to buy bikes for more Brown International Academy students so they can share in the same positive physical and mental health benefits of cycling.

“About 50 years ago, you know, a really large percentage of kids would bike or walk to school today. And today, it's more like 10 or 15%,” added Cowgill. “There's a bunch of studies that show that kids that can exercise before school, perform better academically, kids with things like ADHD and the like, perform better and do better.”

Bikes Together nonprofit refurbishes bikes for kids thanks to Denver7 Gives

Denver7’s generous viewers came through by donating around $1,800 to buy bikes.

In March, Denver7 partnered with Bikes Together, a Denver nonprofit bike shop also on a mission to expand the joys and benefits of biking to more people.

Bikes Together, located in Denver’s Lincoln Park neighborhood, sells refurbished bikes at lower cost to help more people get into riding with the added benefit of helping to keep bicycles out of landfills. Customers at Bikes Together can also pick up a tire, tube or other bike part on the cheap while learning the basics of how to keep their ride safely rolling around Denver.

For Brown Bike Bus, Bikes Together refurbished 11 bikes for kids at Brown International Academy who didn’t have access to a ride.

“With the partnership with the Brown Bike Bus, we are refurbishing a bunch of kids bikes so that any kid who wants to participate in the Brown Bike Bus can do so,” Abby Bohannan, Executive Director Bikes Together, told Denver7 in March. “The donations from the Denver7 Gives campaign is really helping with refurbishing those bikes and making sure that they have new parts. That they're safe to ride, that they’ve been gone through by a professional mechanic and that they’re going to last for a long time.”


Denver7 | Gives

Help buy bikes for kids who don't have one at Brown International Academy

Jeff Anastasio
12:22 PM, Dec 24, 2023

As the school year wrapped up, the group of 11 Brown International Academy kids had a second Christmas when their bikes arrived on the playground.

Elementary students Rey, Rudy, Alega and their other friends strapped on their helmets while Allen and Kristin Cowgill called out their names to come grab their new-to-them bike..

brown bike bus update.png

“Elder! You excited to ride today, buddy?” asked Allen. He picked up a slick new black and orange bike.

With Allen as his guide, Elder learned the basics including how to use his brakes.

Rey, a first-grader who was all smiles in his bright green helmet, couldn’t wait to test out his new bike at a neighborhood park. With a few of Kristin’s pointers, Rey was quickly pedaling all on his own.

Second-grader Alega’s bright purple and white bicycle was the perfect fit. Within a couple of minutes, she was rolling around the playground all on her own and couldn’t wait to show it off.

Not only will the kids ride their bikes with their friends on the Brown Bike Bus, but they will also roll their new rides home to take on an adventure whenever they want..

bike bus update.png

Brown International Academy hopes more kids without access to a bike will also get a chance to ride, which is why the Denver7 Gives campaign is still open for anyone who wants to donate to help us buy more bicycles.

If you'd like to help, just scroll down below to the secure donation form and select "Buy bikes for kids" from the drop-down menu. We thank everyone who has donated so far!

Denver7 features the stories of people who need help and now you can help them with a cash donation through Denver7 Gives. One hundred percent of contributions to the fund will be used to help people in our local community.

To donate to this campaign or choose another to support, use the secure form below.

Want more stories of hope and ways to help in your inbox? Sign up to get the weekly Denver7 Gives Email Newsletter 💌