Bike Elf is excited to announce our second partner organization and our expansion into Knox County, TN to the Wesley House Community Center in Knoxville’s Lonsdale neighborhood.
The newest Bike Elf partnership, celebrated in January 2017, launched Bike Elf’s Read, Write and Ride with Bike Elf initiative by challenging the children in the Wesley House Community Center’s CARES (Children’s After-school Recreational & Educational Support) program to earn a bicycle over the Spring 2017 school term. Wesley House CARES enrollees were challenged to Step Up and Earn a Bike by marking their height and signing their name on several 2’ x 4’ posters that indicated what size bike they’ll need once they achieve the goal of 1st level honor roll.
One of the oldest charities in Knoxville, Wesley House was started in 1907 by a group of Methodist women, beginning its ministry as a childcare center for mothers who worked at Brookside Mills. The community families they serve and their family’s needs have provided the programming road map to Wesley House for decades.
Today Wesley House focuses on two populations of greatest need: children and senior citizens. Wesley House Community Center provides wellness and fellowship for senior citizens and tutoring and educational enrichment for students as they fulfill the organization fulfills its mission: Wesley House empowers and strengthens our community by providing academic, emotional, and spiritual support.
Wesley House’s after-school and summer programs focus on academic success. They provide one-on-one homework help, tutoring, and develop individual learning plans for each child by collaborating with teachers and parents. CARES provides a structured after-school education program for students.
Fall of 2016, enrollment was 105 children in kindergarten through the seventh grade attending fifteen different schools in inner-city Knoxville.