21 September 2023

Cycling Without Age program receives grant for new road safety signs

| Shri Gayathirie Rajen
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Group gathered around a sign

(Front) Gumleigh Gardens Hostel resident Heidi with CSU occupational therapy student Kate on the bike. (Back) CSU’s director of external engagement David Bardos, CSU community relations officer Joanna Kimber, Cycling Without Age Wagga chairperson Helen Sturman and occupational therapist Theresa McMullen. Photo: Shri Gayathirie Rajen.

Cycling Without Age Wagga (CWAWW) is set to benefit from new road safety signs purchased through a Charles Sturt University (CSU) grant.

Cycling Without Age is a global movement that has been getting Wagga residents, who wouldn’t otherwise enjoy the benefits of a bike, out for a ride.

CWAWW received a $1000 health and wellbeing grant under CSU’s Community University Partnership (CUP) grant program.

The grant-funded A-frame noticeboards were revealed at Gumleigh Gardens Hostel on Friday (15 September).

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The boards will be placed near the trishaw routes, alerting the public to ‘Drive carefully – elderly passengers on trishaw ahead’.

CWAWW chairperson Helen Sturman said the organisation was thrilled to receive the funding to help support their service.

“Since our launch in January, we have taken 900 passengers out for a trishaw ride and built our team of volunteers to 30, which has been due to the generosity of our community,” Ms Sturman said.

“We have five aged care facilities on board which we service, as well as three home care services and three disability agencies, which is a small percentage of these services available in Wagga Wagga.

Helen Sturman cutting the ribbon with David Bardos for the new sign.

Helen Sturman cutting the ribbon with David Bardos for the new sign. Photo: Shri Gayathirie Rajen.

“These rides encourage positive aging through relationship building, storytelling, the anticipation of something exciting happening and experiencing what makes life enjoyable like the sun on your face and the wind in your hair,” she said.

CSU’s director of external engagement, David Bardos, said the university was passionate about fostering vibrant communities.

“Charles Sturt University has always been, and continues to be, a big supporter of causes which build a more liveable, thriving community,” Mr Bardos said.

“Cycling Without Age does just this by helping give Wagga Wagga’s older residents and those with a disability an outlet to socialise, get fresh air and see their city in a fun, safe way.”

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Gumleigh Gardens occupational therapist Theresa McMullen said the cycling without age initiative was a ‘fantastic program’ as it encouraged physical activity, engaged the mind and reconnected people with their community.

“It has become a regular part of our social calendar,” Ms McMullen said. “Everybody looks forward to it.”

Gumleigh Gardens resident Heidi enjoys being outside and going for a ride on the bike.

“I like it … I just sit here and they take me around,” Heidi said, before heading off on her morning ride.

CUP grants are put towards regional projects that support cultural, economic, sporting, and environmental development or higher education aspirations, particularly among youth in regional areas.

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