Single Dad Turns Passion for Biking Into Passion for Giving
A single dad in Fort Smith, Arkansas bought his 9-year-old son Elijah a bike for Christmas that started falling apart almost immediately. He asked on Facebook if anyone had any parts to get the bike back on the road and got a tremendous response from friends and strangers.
Wes Brown is a big, friendly guy with an even bigger heart who is teaching his son and his community the importance of kindness and giving. After receiving more than enough bike parts and bikes from his Facebook request to fix his son’s bike, he decided to “pay it forward”. He took the extra parts and started rebuilding bikes which he donates to other kids in need.
“The response from the community was overwhelming,” says Brown, “I’d like to give a shout out to Superior Pawn for donating a tool kit and Southern Trading and Pawn for donating a bike. Once the word got out Maxx Preowned Cars offered to hold a two-day event and gave anyone who donated a bike $100 off the purchase of a car. I’d just like to thank all the friends and individuals who made this possible by donating bikes and parts as well as offering their help in other ways.”
“There is such a need in the community,” says Brown, who also believes kids spend too much time playing video games and need to play outside. “Most time outside, less time on electronics” is his motto. His own son has lost a little baby fat and gotten healthier since getting a bike and he wanted to encourage other kids.
So, Brown decided to start a non-profit to benefit area kids that would not only help families who can’t afford a bicycle but to encourage physical fitness. He started Bikes for Kids in early spring and since March 2017 his organization has given away 43 bikes. The first three bikes he donated to the kids in the neighborhood and from there things just took off.
Brown being the creative sort also designed a logo which he proudly wears on the back of a Hawaiian shirt he bought at Walmart and wears when he and Elijah are delivering bikes.
When asked what he thinks of what his dad is doing, 9-year-old Elijah beamed, “I think it’s a good thing.”
In order to take care of his parents and his son, Brown works part-time jobs, and devotes the rest of his time to Bikes for Kids and making kids happy.
If anyone would like to make a donation to help out, Wes Brown can be contacted through his Bikes for Kids Facebook page or on his GoFundMe site. Brown wants to raise about $1000 to keep his non-profit going. “It’s amazing when a kid gets a bike. I’m blessed to see the smiles on their faces.”