Leila Community Bike Workshops (LCBW)
Description of the project: The LCBW are a women-led, accessible bicycle mechanic workshops. The workshops develop self-reliance and build independent lives for women and LGBTQ people in the deprived south Tel Aviv-Yaffa community. The project ensures 1,350 beneficiaries (mainly women) from poor communities are newly mobile and have the skills to stay independently mobile, so contributing to their safe and harassment free mobility across the city, as well as their economic status, productivity, physical and mental health. With increased physical mobility, participants can increase their socio-economic mobility, accessing new opportunities for work and/or education, and save on transport costs via economic sustainability of accessible transport by maintaining their own bicycles and positively reducing congestion and pollution.
Climate impact: About 1,000 people in Israel die prematurely yearly due to pollutants. Air pollution in Tel Aviv is higher than any major European city. In deprived areas such as the project area, air quality is often at its worse and affects vulnerable populations more, exacerbating their respiratory health problems (e.g., asthma). The project encourages more people to commute by bicycles. This contributes to cutting harmful emissions thus reducing air pollution.
Gender impact: The project provides an innovative alternative for sustainable and self-sufficient access to cost effective transport for poor communities in Tel Aviv in a respectful, educational, and empowering atmosphere. The poor communities, including women and members of the LGBTQ community, become involved in participatory learning space where they are able to share knowledge and skills gained. The project also addresses gender inequality in income. With increased physical mobility though bicycle use, marginalized women now have more access to work and educational opportunities.
Scalability / replicability: In the previous year, the project helped 200 women develop their self-reliance and build independent lives. The project has received overwhelming feedback and requests for long-term learning processes for sustained cost-effective transportation, which shows there is a high demand for women and LGBTQ-oriented activities in the project area. Since the project is supported by SwitchMed, the initiative enables all supported Mediterranean stakeholders with connections to other CSOs in the region to share ideas and scale up activities to new locations.