Meet one of ASIA’s volunteers, Rod Garrison!
Rod is a retired architect with a lifelong love for bicycles. To him, bicycles represent transportation, recreation, and freedom. He taught himself how to fix bicycles using spare parts to give them a second life on the streets. When he retired, he decided to dedicate his time to community service.
He connected with one of ASIA’s team members, Mary, in 2022. She shared ASIA’s mission with him and how our clients across refugee and new immigrant communities could use bicycles, especially after the surge of the pandemic. Rod agreed to help fix bicycles for community members to use. “I was kind of looking for a purpose and this gave me my purpose,” said Rod. “And [this project] combined purpose with passion and things have been running along ever since.”
Since then, he has fixed over 70 bicycles for community members. Many families have received the joy and freedom of a bicycle that they can ride for exercise, transportation, and enjoyment. On one occasion, he met one of the families who were looking for a bicycle for their son. “It was nice seeing and meeting the folks and getting to understand a little about them,” Rod said. “So, I know I'm not just fixing up bikes I'm providing someone recreation or transportation."
Where is Rod’s favorite place to cycle? “My neighborhood,” he answered. “We have a lot of roads and streets here that don’t have a lot of traffic and not many steep hills so I can bike miles and miles.”
Thank you for being a friend to ASIA, Rod!