On the weekend before Christmas, it wasn’t just rain pouring throughout Pittsburgh; blessings from the hearts of Pittsburgh police officers were too.
On Dec. 21, for the 13th year, the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police gave 112 boys and girls from local afterschool programs and faith based organizations bikes at their annual Holiday Bike Giveaway at the Zone 5 Police Station, in East Liberty. They said it was their way of providing the youth in the community a special, but earned gift for the holidays.
“This is fantastic. You can touch so many lives. Teach a child how to ride a bike and that’s their first bit of freedom. You remember in your own mind, back to your childhood, how that felt for you—‘it’s a sense of accomplishment, I can go out with my friends.’ And as you grew, you got a little more independent,” said Pittsburgh Police Officer Christine Scalise, of Zone 5. “This is their first set of wheels and it’s cool to see their bright, shiny faces. This is something that they earned, that they did something for, they’re proud of themselves and they should be rewarded for that great job that they’re doing.”
Tiffany Dobson, of Garfield, who’s 9-year-old daughter, Taylor, received a bike, said, “It’s an awesome (event). Especially during this time of the season that sometimes can be a season of hardship for some. It’s exciting to know the police do care about the children in the community and it’s an awesome thing that they can show a positive experience about bike safety.”