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Prisoners build bicycles for students

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High-achieving youngsters were given an early Christmas present yesterday thanks to the hard work of a group of prisoners.

Six students from schools across the Island received bikes that had been made by inmates Victor Roberts, Phillip Bradshaw, Brittonie Taylor, Jay Dill and Kenneth Burgess in the Westgate workshop.

The prisoners, who are part of the Lifeline group, presented the bikes to Josiah Ward, 9, from the Gilbert Institute; Rajah Worrell, 10, from St George's Preparatory School; Juanique Nesbit, 9, from Prospect Primary; Aalayah Trott, 8, from East End Primary; Shawn Troy, 8, from Dalton E. Tucker Primary; and Joshua Paltl, 10, from Port Royal Primary.

The men have spent the past two months building the bikes from old and spare parts collected from the Tynes Bay facility and donated by Sheelagh Cooper from the Coalition for the Protection of Children and Gina Ingham from Team StreetSafe. “I am most proud about the fact that we have gifted over 20 bikes to various schools throughout the Island since we started this initiative,” Mr Burgess said.

“We really appreciate the contribution of Ms Cooper and Ms Ingham, without whom we would not have been able to do this.

“Good deeds have their own rewards and we are very happy to make a small difference to these very deserving children.”

The Lifeline group also recently raised $200 for Bermuda Cancer and Health by taking part in the Movember fundraising initiative in prison.

Mr Bradshaw said: “This never gets old. Just to see the smiles on the children's faces when they get their bikes is great. It's a joy and a pleasure.”

Teachers from each school accompanied the pupils for the prize-giving ceremony that took place at Corrections Headquarters in Dockyard yesterday.

All of the children thanked the prisoners for their work after being presented with their bikes, while Commissioner of Corrections Colonel Edward Lamb praised the inmates for their tireless efforts.

Early Christmas gift: Juanique Nesbit, 9, from Prospect Primary, is all smiles after receiving her bike from the Department of Corrections' Lifeline initiative. Inmates at Westgate Correctional Facility spent the past two months building bikes from old and spare parts (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Kind contribution: front row from left, Commissioner of Corrections Eddie Lamb, Josiah Ward, Rajah Worrell, Juanique Nesbit, Aalayah Trott, Shawn Troy and Joshua Paltl. Back row from left, Victor Roberts, Phillip Bradshaw, Brittonie Taylor, Jay Dill and Kenneth Burgess
Rajah Worrell, 10, from St George's Preparatory School on his new bike with, from left, Brittonie Taylor, Jay Dill, Phillip Bradshaw. Kenneth Burgess and Victor Roberts (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Aalayah Trott, 8, from East End Primary, was thrilled to receive a new bike as part of the Lifeline initiative at Westgate Correctional Facility (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Joshua Paltl, 10, from Port Royal Primary, tries out his new wheels (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
Josiah Ward, 9, from the Gilbert Institute, takes his new cycle for a spin with a little help from the team who built it (Photograph by Akil Simmons)
The bikes were built and given out as part of the Lifeline initiative (Photograph by Akil Simmons)

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Published December 12, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated December 12, 2015 at 8:20 am)

Prisoners build bicycles for students

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