With the promotion of sustainable mobility having been part its strategy for the past several years, the Tour de France is once again showing its support for everyday cycling throughout the summer. From Saturday 27 June (when riders were initially due to start the Tour in Nice) to Sunday 20 September (the finish date of the 107th edition on the Champs-Elysées), the Tour de France United is calling upon the global community of cycling fans to support a series of actions aimed at promoting cycling, especially in response to the constraints imposed by the current health crisis.
Discarded bicycles can become a valuable means of transport, often only lacking simple repairs. This is the conclusion drawn by the Emmaüs association, an expert in recycling which can restore abandoned bikes to sell them at low and affordable prices. The Tour de France United has set an objective of collecting 5,000 bikes (i.e. approximately 150 per stage town) and donating €30 per bike to Emmaüs to get them back up and running.
For more than ten years, children have been invited to the finish of the Tour de France in partnership with Secours populaire français, whose usual actions aimed at young people have been disrupted by the health crisis. However, around 20 Bliss on a bike days will be organised, benefiting nearly 400 children from underprivileged families affected by the crisis.
The Tour de France supports the South African association Qhubeka every year, donating 176 bikes (corresponding to the number of riders in the Tour peloton) to children living far from their schools. This year, the charity established the Heroes on bikes programme, aimed at providing bicycles to caregivers and social workers who are involved in the fight against Covid 19, in disadvantaged neighborhoods in South Africa. As a supporter of this initiative, the Tour de France will fund nearly 1,000 bikes to be donated to Qhubeka. And on a global scale, more than 200 bicycles will be donated to children from families in need who are supported by associations such as BiJeVa in Belgium and Jeugdfonds Sport & Cultuur in the Netherlands.
In addition to the various impactful initiatives outlined above, the Tour is enhancing its support by running a fundraising campaign for the public. Enthusiasts of the Grande Boucle can make a donation by following the steps outlined on www.letour.fr.
Numerous solidarity campaigns will also be carried out by partners, with the support of the Tour de France United: LCL supports young cyclists, providing them with useful accessories for cycling with the "helmet initiative". E. Leclerc is renewing its supports of the Mécénat Chirurgie Cardiaque association with a 2020 version of the "Sommets du Coeur", the “One child, one bicycle” initiative launched in 2017 by Century 21 and backed by Bernard Hinault, whose aim is to collect kids’ bikes to offer them to underprivileged families; the AG2R La Mondiale Vivons Vélo programme, which intends to convert kilometres ridden into donations for the Institut Pasteur; the collecting of used telephones with Ecosystem led by cycling clubs to help local charities; and the Domitys challenge, whose objective is to reach 12,000 kms cycled in residences to raise funds for Mécénat Chirurgie Cardiaque.
“Now is the time for action" said Christian Prudhomme, the Director of Le Tour de France. “The Tour is the ride of champions, but we are also focused on the development of the bicycle. The bicycle, in all its forms, as a vehicle for well-being, freedom and happiness, but also a vehicle for solidarity, even more now so with the Covid-19 crisis.”