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By Vourie Molivakoro Daily Post

To advocate for a cleaner and safer environment, five smart and adorable kids were given bike maintenance and riding lessons last weekend by Cycling Coach Alex Pheu from the Vanuatu Cycling Federation.

It is said that the foundation of learning is during childhood and last Saturday Leila Loan Pheu, Felicity, Aidan, Aidan, and Minxin got a moment in their lives when Coach Pheu guided them from the Alliance Francaise premises to Feiawa Park where they got their expert lessons from the experienced cyclist.

As beginners, the fresh bikers mounted their Bicycle Motorcrosses (BMXs) to the park taking turns zigzagging and doing cone slalom exercises, gymkhana, and other safety techniques.

While the event was a means of educating the youngsters on the importance of a free and safer environment using bikes that do not give off bad emissions but are pollution-free, the smiling juniors saw it as the introduction to real-life biking skills knowing they will leave the class educated and ready for any bike trip.

An enthusiastic and charismatic 9-year-old Leila stated that the lesson helped her and her friends improve their pedaling skills and understand better biking rules and has great health benefits.

“Riding a bike is great. First of all, it’s fun and loving, and it is environment friendly because it does not give off pollution like cars and it helps your body to be physically fit. We also learned to keep our bikes clean and safe at all times” she remarked.

On that eventful day, Pheu and assistant Liza Jean Pierre also offered aid with maintenance to damaged and unused bikes making sure all the bits and pieces were scrubbed, greased, and repaired in a very educative manner.

Doctor Christopher Bartlett a bike rider who got his bike to the maintenance team that day said he strongly supports the use of bikes, however, one of the biggest problems in Vanuatu is that people do not know how to use and maintain a bike.

“Use of bikes is efficient, affordable, and does not pose a threat to our livelihoods,” Bartlett said.

He commented that the educative program has given him new insights to all the incredible parts of a bike that most people do not know like the tinies leads, but are significant to the smooth operation of a bike.

“Today I learned a lot and I suggest that people focus more on buying bikes rather than cars. How can we say we live in a world where climate change is a threat and yet we prioritize and go for the dangerous gas emitters,” he said.

The participating children are aged between 7 and 9 years of age.

Coach and Mechanic Pheu along with the Federation have different bike models including the low-maintenance BMXs and high-maintenance mountain bikes.