‘Great Bike Giveaway’ votes and donations could help young Hingham resident with special needs increase her mobility and independence

Caroline Gillig

February 23, 2022 By Carol Britton Meyer

To vote and/or make a donation toward a bike for Caroline, visit https://www.greatbikegiveaway.com/carolinegillig. The deadline to vote is March 16 by noon
and to make a donation, March 30, by noon.

Hingham resident Caroline Gillig, who attends the Cardinal Cushing School in Hanover serving special needs students ages 6 to 22, is participating in The Friendship Circle’s Great Bike Giveaway with the hope of gaining enough votes to win a Discovery Series adaptive bike to provide her with a sense of independence and to increase her mobility.

Owning such a bike would provide an opportunity for her to ride outdoors with her peers and family. Supporters may also make donations toward the $3,300 bike.

Caroline, who currently rides the school's Discovery Series bike, has severe hypotonia and needs daily exercise to stay strong. She would love to have one of her own and to be able to continue to enjoy the pleasures of riding after she graduates in May upon reaching age 22.

Friendship Circle offers a number of online special needs resources, including a blog with more than 1,000 articles on special needs parenting, products, therapy, and more. (See www.friendshipcircle.org for further information.)

Caroline is one of three Cardinal Cushing students who is participating in the giveaway. "This will be her last opportunity to possibly receive one of these bikes through this contest because she is graduating soon," her mother, Pam Gillig, said. "We appreciate the support and generosity we've experienced so far, including some donations."

The Great Bike Giveaway program "gives away" adaptive bikes to children and other young people with special needs and provides an opportunity to win a bike as well as a fundraising platform for friends, family members, and the community at large to make donations if they wish to do so in addition to casting their "votes."

The Giveaway gives children with special needs the joy of riding a special bike when they might otherwise miss out on this experience.

The prize bike

Caroline's mother explained the benefits she would experience should she be awarded a Discovery Series bike. "Caroline is non-verbal but likes being active, and a bike of her own would enhance her quality of life," she said. "Caroline walks, rides the same bike at her school, and swims five days a week. Having a bike of her own would allow her to ride outside and around the neighborhood -- it's like an adult tricycle. If Caroline doesn't stay active, she [eventually] wouldn't be able to walk."

The Great Bike Giveaway provides three ways a child can receive a bike:

  •  The registrant with the most votes in his or her selected bike category will receive a free adaptive bike of their choosing.
  • Anyone who receives 50 votes or more will automatically be entered into a drawing for the bike they selected to meet their particular needs when registering.

If a registrant does not have the most votes, or they do not win in the drawing, they can fundraise to receive a bike. Friendship Circle works with adaptive bike companies from around the world to secure discounted pricing and provides a fundraising platform, making it easier for families to raise money for a bike.

For a child with special needs, bike riding is far more than a recreational experience. "Bike riding offers a source of much-needed exercise and provides therapeutic value while contributing to an inclusive environment where a child with special needs can ride a bike like everyone else," according to the https://www.greatbikegiveaway.com/ website.

Hundreds of children and other youth with special needs require the use of an adaptive bike, "yet most parents cannot afford the high costs and their children never get to experience the joy of riding a bike," according to the website.

That’s why Friendship Circle created The Great Bike Giveaway, a platform providing families with special needs with an opportunity to win an adaptive bike that's best suited to their family member.

2 thoughts on “‘Great Bike Giveaway’ votes and donations could help young Hingham resident with special needs increase her mobility and independence”

  1. I read a story this morning in the Morning Journal in Lorain, Ohio. I was enraged by the end of the article of this boy Darnell Rivera needing 50 votes to enter a drawing for a bike wheelchair, either vote or send money just to enter a drawing! Although I feel that you are attempting to doing a human kindness in trying to help these children, I feel you should think of another avenue to support these children and get all of them a bike wheelchair. The is sad and pathetic. Are you telling me that there isn’t an organization that will not help all of these kids get a bike. I don’t believe this. As a matter of fact, in my opinion, this almost sounds like a scam…………..

    • Hi Francine
      Thanks to the votes & the people who donated
      My son Darnell Rivera received his special bike. No isn’t a Scam. It’s real !!


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.