Wheely Tots is grateful to our funders for their support which allows us to deliver exciting activities.
Wheely Tots has received funding from Cycling Grants London since 2014 for a number of projects encouraging families to cycle in London. This funding has allowed us to expand our activities and engage with more families.
We have completed 2 years of this 3 year project from October 2017 that involves a week-long series of parent & toddler cycling sessions each Easter school holiday. We run 5 sessions each day from Monday to Friday at Lordship Recreation Ground in Tottenham, North London.
The success of the project in Year 1 with around 150 families attending led to Wheely Tots launching weekly sessions at Lordship Recreation Ground on Friday mornings. The project was included as a case study on the Walking and Cycling Grants London website.
“I’m really glad I stopped by on the first day, my daughter’s made me bring them each day and look at them now – the oldest is pedalling and the youngest balancing really well” Saba, mum of 3 daughters
In Year 2 we were fortunate to have support from volunteers from Sage Foundation that attended to help our session leaders to manage the increased number of participants.
We successfully applied for funding for 2 additional projects in 2018:
Awesome Families – offering specialist guidance and sessions in cycling and cycle safety to families based in Hackney, Haringey and Islington with members who have access needs. These might be physical or learning disabilities, mental health challenges, or any other barriers the family has. Sessions are planned according to the family’s needs and may include bike fitting, training in simple bike maintenance, inductions to specialist equipment or how to ride on the roads.
Family Fit – offering families based in Islington, Haringey and Hackney the chance to work with one of our friendly session leaders to discover how to choose the best bike for each family member. We cover the basics of how to check what bike size you need, what the correct riding position is and how to adjust a bike to ensure it fits the rider.
We successfully applied for funding in 2019 for:
Family Explorers – offering families the opportunity to join us for a walk alongside their toddlers on balance bikes to explore the open spaces of Lordship Rec and beyond. The walks will launch in 2020, keep an eye on our events page for details.
Wheely Tots received funding in 2019 from Haringey Council for Your Bike Project, a three year project to support young people aged 11-18 years from Broadwater Farm and Northumberland Park estates to learn and share skills around bikes and cycling in their community.
From 2016 to 2019, Wheely Tots to attended community events to discuss, demonstrate and promote how parents can cycle safely with toddlers. The target group was families with young children under the age of 4. We typically attended events with cycle mechanics/instructors from our network who have experience working with families with young children. We attended events with a cargo bike containing toddler balance bikes and our aim was for toddlers to try these out while we had a conversation with parents. We also brought trailers, toddler bike seats and adult bikes in order to demonstrate the practical aspects of family cycling in London. We taught basic bike maintenance to some attendees at these events.
Over three years, we engaged with 465 families.
We surveyed attendees and found that:
- 100% enjoyed the session and felt they had learned something new
- 71% felt more confident about cycling, especially when they saw what their children are capable of
- 59% thought they would cycle more regularly and there was a delight to know that this was even a possibility as a family with a toddler as the assumption was often that children needed to be older to ride a bike
These events have become a mainstay for our local outreach activities and we are now asked to attend alongside other community events and initiatives. This in turn has led to other local opportunities for us.
Case study on the Walking and Cycling Grants London website.
Family Buddy Up
Wheely Tots received funding in 2018 from the London Family Fund run by the Mayor’s Office to deliver the Family Buddy Up Project. The aim of the fund was to support activities to improve social networks, reduce isolation and bring children and families together.
The Family Buddy Up project paired families from different backgrounds together and gave them a slightly challenging activity to complete together. We worked in partnership with Haringey Play Association and Home-Start Haringey, Hackney and Waltham Forest to engage with over 100 families during a 6 month period.
Feedback from the families that took part shows that:
- 69% of attendees met people from different backgrounds
- 67% met new people and expanded their social group
- 54% of participants met people they felt they could go to if they needed help
- 45% found out more about local activities and services for families and young children
- 43% started using more local activities and services
We welcomed the Deputy Mayor to see the project in action in April 2019.
Community Grants Award: Cycling Ambassadors
Wheely Tots was awarded a Community Grant from Haringey 40:20 in 2019. We recruited and trained Ambassadors to encourage Haringey residents to walk or cycle rather than make journeys by car.
Women and Girls Cycling Project
Wheely Tots received funding from Sage Foundation in 2019 to pilot cycling activities with women and girls. Women are an underrepresented group in cycling; a Sustrans survey showed that while 43% of women own a bike, almost 8 out of 10 never cycle at all and only 4% cycle more than once a week.
We ran sessions with 4 partners; Haringey Play Association, Haringey Council, Risley Avenue Primary School and Girls Friendly Society and reached over 110 attendees. All sessions were delivered by women instructors and included bike fitting, bike maintenance, route planning, cycling skills and theory.
In addition, 5 women completed the 4-day National Cycle Instructor Training and 4 women completed the 2-day Cytech Home Maintenance Course. Three of these women are now employed by Wheely Tots and two have supported our sessions as volunteers.