Denmark's Ministry of Transport announced that is has teamed up with the Cyclists' Association to create the 'Give a Bicycle' initiative, a scheme intended to provide Ukrainian refugees with free bikes.
Danish people can donate their old or unused bikes by uploading a photograph and information about its size and condition through the specially created website. Ukrainians can request a bike via a form on the same website, with volunteers on hand to deliver machines to refugees when a donation and request match up.
The Danish Minister of Transport, Trine Bramsen, claims the initiative will give refugees freedom of movement in the country, thus helping them to become integrated within society and comfortable in local communities. The National Chairman of the Cyclists’ Association, Jens Peter Hansen, concurs.
He said: “We can make a difference. As cyclists, we know how the bicycle gives us the freedom to get around. I hope that many of our members and other volunteers have the desire and opportunity to help people who have had to leave everything."
As well as offering a platform for donating and requesting bikes, the website also provides information to Ukrainians about Danish cycling culture and traffic rules and requirements to ensure everyone is kept safe at all times, while also staying within the parameters of the law.
The website's mission statement reads: "Denmark is a cycling country, and the bicycle is an everyday means of transport for many Danes.
"Join us in welcoming Ukrainian refugees to Denmark and Danish cycling culture.
"Donate your own, used bicycle - and help newly arrived refugees from Ukraine get a bicycle so they can easily explore their new surroundings."
From this week, Ukrainian refugees in Denmark can apply for residence, with more than 1,000 having officially sought asylum in the country since Russia's invasion - though that total is likely higher. The country expects to welcome more than 20,000 Ukrainians over the coming days and weeks, and the 'Give a Bicycle' initiative will hopefully provide people some independence as quickly as possible.
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