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State Honoree

Jose Alvarez

Puerto Rico

founded “Bikes for Tykes,” a program that collects and refurbishes used bicycles for underprivileged children throughout northeastern Pennsylvania. Ashley was inspired to develop the program with her sisters after she outgrew her first bike, which they cleaned up and donated to Big Brothers and Big Sisters. Since that first donation 10 years ago, “Bikes for Tykes” has donated more than 500 bicycles to children, and even to some adult immigrants. Initially, Ashley and her sisters would solicit donations door-to-door in their neighborhood, but since Ashley conducted a one-day bike drive that yielded over 200 bike donations, she now consistently receives phone calls about donations to her program. “Through my experience with “Bikes for Tykes,” I have learned that the community can be incredibly responsive if they believe in a cause,” said Ashley. “Everyone involved in the projects, the recipients and the volunteers, reap significant benefits from the experience and will always carry a send of duty for the needs of others.”