Pedals for Progress

Rating: 4.5 stars   12 reviews

Issues: Environment, International, Economic Development, Microfinance

Location: Box 312 High Bridge NJ 08829 USA

Mission: The mission of Pedals for Progress is to:  1. enhance the productivity of low-income workers overseas where reliable, environmentally sound transportation is scarce, by supplying reconditioned bicycles; 2. promote self-sustaining bicycle repair facilities [overseas], employing local people; 3. provide leadership...throughout North America for the recycling of bicycles, parts, and accessories; 4. reduce the volume of bicycles, parts, and accessories flowing to U.S. landfills; 5. foster environmentally sound transportation policies that encourage widespread use of bicycles worldwide; and 6. foster in the North American public an understanding of, and a channel for, responding to the transportation needs of the poor in developing countries.
Geographic areas served: world wide

2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Role: General Member of the Public
Rating: 1 stars  

I am interested in getting involved but can't seem to find out any reporting information about this organization. The BBB 'giving review' states that this organization refuses to adhere to its giving standards. Why is this? Also when I went to Charity Navigator, I was not able to find this organization listed or rated. Can anyone help me with this? We have a free bicycle clinic at our church. We fix bikes and give free bikes away. I would be interested in getting involved in something like this, but I need some accountability?

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have not been involved but I am interested.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would make sure that is got a good rating with the BBB charity given guidelines and also woudl get registered with Charity Navigator. Open the books!

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Rating: 4 stars  

6 people found this review helpful

At first I was happy to find an outlet for old, discarded bikes which still had life in them, but were of the wrong model for our society's taste. Avoiding waste... At the collections I attended, Dave Schweidenback, the founder and president, showed his enthusiasm by always working harder than anyone else, while sharing real life stories on how these bikes helped people, families and regional development. I decided to run my own spring collection, now in its 6th edition. I estimate that I channeled over 500 bikes to P4P partners, benefiting not only 500 new owners, but also the full distribution structure put in place by P4P: workshop employees receiving and fixing the bikes, owner's family, local economic activity, partner's non-profit programs (Youth, health, education, etc...) After being a trustee for 3 years, I am satisfied that Dave's heart is in the right place. This is evident in the way he started the organization (advertised for donations to send 14 bikes to the village he resided in as a peace corp, collected 10 times more!), and the way he supports it today rather than the other way around (has donated his monthly paycheck several times in lean years to ensure P4P's survival) For me, P4P's impact is beyond redirecting discarded treasure from

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the satisfaction of re-purposing items from the US and making a difference in the developing world.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Selfless and dedicated to the mission.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Ship more good items our society discard to places were they are essential, in a way promoting development rather than passive assistance.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-5-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I am just getting ready for my 9th annual Pedals for Progress collection. The staff is always tremendously supportive and it's a day I look forward to each year. I started when my children were young and saw this as a way that we could volunteer as a family and feel connected to a global community. We love the win-win of keeping bikes and sewing machines out of landfills here and having them go to developing countries where they change lives.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Coordinating a collection is such a wonderfully inclusive experience. We have volunteers of all ages and donors comment on how thrilled they are to be making a difference.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Helpful and enthusiastic.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I volunteer at collections, helping to prepare bicycles for shipping. The collections always run smoothly and typically between 25 and 100 bikes are collected at each. Pedals for Progress provides those in the third world with transportation and opportunity while simultaneously keeping bicycles out of American landfills. Everyone who I have met from the organization has been extremely kind. They are passionately committed to what they are doing, and what they are doing is a great thing.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

expand its operations, both in the Unites States and abroad, hire more employees, run more collections, and advertise.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

I met Dave, the President at a Peace Corps convention in 1999. I have run at least one collection per year, collected almost 1400 bikes, 40 sewing machines, and over $15000. My experience has always been positive, and I look forward to more successful collections.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Their dedication to creating a better situation for many in developing countries. The staff who attends the collection is always patient and teach those who volunteer how to prepare bikes for shipment.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-1-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Pedals for Progress is an ingenious organization that facilitates a symbiotic relationship to help everyone involved. Used bicycles (and sewing machines) that would otherwise take up space in landfills here in the U.S. are sent to developing nations. In these nations, locals are trained to repair and maintain the bikes, and actually set up bike shops to support the local economy. Bikes donated do need to be accompanied by a donation to offset shipping fees, but the whole donation is tax-deductible. In my experience as a collection coordinator, all of the members of the NJ based main office are extremely responsive and helpful. They get back to you right away with answers to any questions, and they provide you with all the materials, tools, and information needed to hold a successful collection. The most challenging thing is getting the word out at a county level. It is a lot of work to contact local news sources, etc. I would highly recommend volunteering for Pedals for Progress, donating to the organization, and even setting up your own collection if there is not one already in your area.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

seeing all the bicycles that would otherwise pollute landfills go to places where they will be valued.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-4-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

My church has worked with Pedals for Progress for seven years. We include them in our annual Alternative Gift Fair each November. We also hosted a bike collection with them. Our dealings with the director and staff have all been very positive. We like the way they keep old bikes out of landfills and help people have better lives because of the bikes!

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

have space to collect even more bikes! It could ship more bikes and sewing machines all over the world and make an even bigger difference in the lives of needy people.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

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Rating: 4 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

They got back to me pretty quickly and answered all my E-mails. The guy from the organization helped me plan the bike drive, and they provided fliers to advertise. They helped me out alot during the bike colection.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

In when we colected 28 bikes and a sewing machine when I hosted a bike colection.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Is how quickly they respond to my E-mails.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Friendly and Helpful.

Ways to make it better...

They had more dates available.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

The economic situation

One thing I'd also say is that...

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-11-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Pedals for Progress is a wonderful program that combines recycling/reusing old bicycles and sewing machines (promoting sustainability and preventing usuable bikes and sewing machines from ending up in landfills) with helping people in developing countries improve the quality of their lives (providing bicycles for transportation for work and school and sewing machines for starting small businesses). Our school community service program has collected bikes and sewing machines through bi-yearly collections where students actually help dismantle the bikes to ship abroad. The students then learn about the value of reusing servicable bikes and the importance of viable, affordable transportation for people in developing countries. Pedals for Progress is terrific!

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

wonderful and supportive, helpful and instructive. Our supervising staff member was great at working with the kids and educating them about the program and the how they were helping others.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About once a year

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009-9-01

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Rating: 5 stars  

4 people found this review helpful

Pedals for Progress is a very worthy charity. It provides necessary transportation (bicycles) and sewing machines to people in third world countries. They do this by repairing bicycles & sewing machines normally destined for a landfill and then shipping them overseas to third world countries. How often do you find a charity that not only does good deeds, but is green in the process?

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Wow -- ship a lot more bikes and sewing machines to third world countries and also spread the word about this wonderful organization.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every six months

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-1-01

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