OAR of Richmond and Outpost Richmond are pleased to announce a new partnership to bring mobility to Richmond’s neediest and hardest working residents: its employed citizens returning from incarceration.

The “Ride to Reentry” program provides select OAR clients with bicycles, locks, lights, and helmets, as well as bike maintenance and bike safety courses. This partnership seeks to overcome a fundamental obstacle of reentry: transportation. 

Transportation is one of the greatest challenges our clients face, explains OAR Executive Director Sara Conlon. While getting a job is difficult for our clients, getting to that job might be even harder. The bus system doesn’t currently connect to the suburban jobs in the region, and even if our clients are lucky enough to get a friend or relative to drive them to work, that’s not sustainable arrangement.

This partnership with Outpost Richmond allows our clients to get to work by their own power. It’s transformative.

Braden Govoni, owner of Outpost Richmond, agrees. The whole point of Outpost Richmond is to help people see bikes as tools instead of toys. Yes, bikes are fun, but they allow you to get to work or school or the grocery store without the burden of owning a car. Our partnership with OAR reinforces our mission—that bicycles provide a means to reimagining your capabilities.

OAR clients apply to the “Ride to Re-entry” program after fulfilling the individual requirements for cognitive behavior therapy and job training required by their OAR case managers. These selected clients then take a series of bike maintenance and bike safety courses cotaught by OAR and Outpost Richmond.

If you are interested in donating a bike, helmet, lock, or lights please contact Simon Valencia, program coordinator at svalencia@oarric.org.  If you are interested in making a financial contribution to Ride to Reentry, please contact Sara Conlon, Executive Director at sconlon@oarric.org.