Joe Ryan, with support from Mike Dugan, presented the history of the Cameron Park Rotary Bicycle Project which has been accomplished with the help of the Folsom State Prison.  Joe worked for the state legislature back in the 1980's and 90's, including being on a Citizen's Advisory for the Prison, and was involved on a program called Garden at the Prison.  In the 1990's and 2000's the Placerville Rotary in conjunction with the Marine Corps League participated in a "Toys for Tots" program each holiday season as a way to provide needy children with Christmas or other holiday presents.  At that time they started including bicycles as part of the gifts to children along with the toys.  Eventually the Marine Corps League  and Placerville Rotary learned that bicycles and toys were different enough that they shouldn't be part of the same program. 
Around this time, the year 2000, Joe changed membership to the Cameron Park Rotary Club.  Joe's contacts at the Prison led to finding an inmate, Mauricio, who was a former bicycle road racer and was excellent at repairing and refurbishing bicycles.  Thus, our Cameron Park Rotary Club filled the roll of collecting used / discarded bicycles, using the El Dorado Disposal's MRF/Disposal Facility as a place for people to contribute / collect the used bicycles, and then CP Rotary members with trucks and trailers would, once a month, transport the used bicycles to the Folsom State Prison as "raw materials" for Mauricio to refurbish.  After about a month, our club picks up the newly refurbished bikes, which operate as good as new, and distributes them to various worth recipients.  Organizations or places where the bicycles have been distributed include: the Union Gospel Mission in Sacramento who tend to the homeless; the Veterans Medical Center, the El Dorado County elementary schools' Title I students (who qualify for a free or subsidized school lunch), Paradise area Camp Fire survivors, and various children's programs in Alameda County.
 
Mauricio is soon leaving the program and going on parole in Southern California for a six month period, and we want to help find him a job at a bike shop in our area when he is finished with parole.  Another inmate has been found and trained by Mauricio, so we are hopeful that the program will continue as it has to date, and we can continue to enable many deserving children and adults to receive a working bicycle.  On May 28th, after a 9am pickup at the MRF, at  the Johnny Cash gate of the Folsom Prison at 10:00 am we are hoping that as many from our club as possible will meet to be part of a newsworthy event to celebrate some of the accomplishments of this program.
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