WASHINGTON, D.C. (BRAIN)—Bolstered by a $25,000 grant from Clif Bar, the Alliance for Biking & Walking is playing a key role in a national effort to replace short car trips with bike travel.
The 2 Mile Challenge was inspired by a little-recognized fact: 40 percent of urban trips are less than two miles. Ryan Mayo, brand experience manager for Clif Bar, said the energy bar company was staggered by that statistic. So it came up with a creative competition to encourage consumers to stop driving and start cycling.
To lead the charge in the 2 Mile Challenge, Clif Bar selected three nonprofit organizations that work to advance sustainable transit options. Each nonprofit was awarded $25,000 and assigned to represent one of three national teams: Gold, Blue, or Red. The Alliance for Biking & Walking is going for the Gold.
Beginning this week, the public is invited to sign up for the 2 Mile Challenge and pledge support for one of the teams. As participants park their cars and hop on their bicycles, they will log their travel online. Each trip on a bicycle will add to the point total for their team. At the end of October, an additional $25,000 grant will be awarded to the team with the most points.
Jeff Miller, executive director of the Alliance for Biking & Walking, commended Clif Bar and predicted an enthusiastic response from the Alliance's more than 160 member organizations. "Replacing even short car trips with bike travel can jumpstart big changes for individuals and their communities," Miller said. "The 2 Mile Challenge adds to the enjoyment and excitement of cycling. And, with its generous grant to the Alliance, Clif Bar is helping to build the bike movement from the ground up."
The Alliance will use the $25,000 grant from Clif Bar to support its Winning Campaigns Trainings, which equip grassroots organizers with key skills to become effective campaigners for biking and walking. The grant will also assist in the development and launch of the Guide to Funding Biking and Walking Projects, an upcoming Alliance publication.
According to Mayo, choosing the Alliance as the grant recipient and team leader was an easy choice. "The Alliance really spoke to exactly what we're trying to do: help to build and support new coalitions at the grassroots level," he said.
To support the Alliance, the public is invited to take the challenge and join the Gold Team. For more information or to sign up, visit www.2milechallenge.com (click on link).