Several inmates at the Lansing Correctional Facility work like Santa’s elves through the whole year to repair bicycles for the Christmas for Children Program.
The Gardner Police Department seeks bicycles in any condition for the program, said Sgt. Steve Benz, Gardner PD public information officer.
“Unfortunately, with all the construction and our move from the old police station to the new Justice Center, we did not get near the donations of bicycles we normally do,” Benz said. “Our next delivery of bicycles to Lansing will be on December 12. If you have an old bicycle to donate now, we will take it up then.”
Citizens can donate bicycles to the program at any time of year by dropping them off at the Gardner Justice Center at 16540 Moonlight Road, at the southwest corner of the parking lot near employee parking.
“Several times a year, Gardner PD takes all of the collected bicycles to the Lansing Correctional Facility in Lansing, Kan., where select inmates work to bring life back to older bicycles, making them like new,” Benz said. “Those bicycles are then returned to our community in mid-December, to be delivered to children whose families have been selected as recipients.”
The selection process has already been completed for Christmas 2019, and bicycles at Lansing already have been completed for those children, but the need for bicycles to restore is continual, he said.
The police department will share more information on how to apply for bicycles through Christmas for Children after the first of the New Year.
In the meantime, the more bicycles they can gather for the program, the better. The inmates who refurbish the bicycles participate in a special program, using tools issued to them for the purpose. They can restore bicycles in any condition and they work very hard to make the bicycles look shiny and new. The program has supplied more than 200 bicycles to children.
“Our thanks to everyone in Gardner and the surrounding areas that have donated to this program, and who continue to support our efforts through all of our programs, to help our fellow residents and our community,” Benz said.