There are a number of benefits to making regular journeys by bicycle, to individuals and society as a whole, however in our communities up and down the UK our preferred mode of transport remains privately owned cars, often with a single occupant.
The daily commute to work is an example of a regular journey that many of us could easily undertake by bicycle. The average commute in the UK based on 2011 census data is 15 km, while over half of part time workers commute only 5 km. So how as a society can we encourage more individuals to make the choice to make more journeys by bicycle?
SHIFT is an idea to encourage individuals to make that choice, and to then work as part of a team to raise money for good causes.
So how does it work?
Float the idea to your employer. Ask them to pledge a small sum per km cycled by employees. This could just be for commutes to work, but why not all journeys made by bicycle?
Apoint a Cycling Ambassador. Their role is to promote the scheme within your business, and keep track of the total km each month.
Pick an App to record your rides, for example Strava. Ask everyone interested to create an account and download the App to their mobile phone. The App can then be used to record your rides.
Using the App create a network of all employees taking part (eg. Strava has a Club function. Once a month get your Cycling Ambassador to add up the mileage, and keep track of the running total.
Shout about it! Let your marketing department know how things are going, and let them raise awareness of the difference the company and employees are making. Twitter, website, the local press, and councillors. Encourage your friends and family to float the idea to their employers.
Keep us in the loop at SHIFT. We'll post your km on our website. Feel free to use our logo in your marketing if you so desire.
Donate the money to the charity of your choice, however we would recommend the donations is to Sustrans, such that the money is invested in improving cycling and walking for all.
Share the stories and pictures of your adventures.
Benefits to the Company...
Healthier workforce (benefits to both physical and mental health)
Teambuilding aspect of demonstrating the idea of small individual steps having a collective benefit
Actively promoting a reduction in the Company's carbon footprint
Actively promoting improvement to the welfare of your employees
This is a good news story! A source of marketing material to raise the Company profile and differentiate you from your competitors
Benefits to the Individual...
Regular exercise contributing to physical and mental wellbeing
Save money on travel costs
Working as part of a team to raise money for charity
Reduction in personal carbon footprint
Trust us...it is enjoyable!
Benefits to Society...
Reduced number of trips made by car
= less cars on the road
= less congestion
= reduced CO2 emissions
= improved air quality
= safer environment for pedestrians and cyclists
...encouraging more individuals to embrace walking and cycling as a regular mode of transport. Repeat.
Healthier, happier society
Your collective endeavours will result in a donation to a charity. If Sustrans is the chosen beneficiary, your actions will be directly funding improvements to walking and cycling infrastructure in the UK, possibly your local area.