In order to motivate women to cycle more and also as a form of sustainable and healthy transport in Bengaluru, an initiative has been launched on the streets of the Garden City. The project, a collaboration between city-based NGO Jhatkaa and cycle touring company ‘Pedal in Tandem’ is named the Cycle School for Women. The idea essentially is to make women cyclists engage in the activity and feel comfortable.
A campaigner for the NGO Jhatkaa Nimisha Agarwal told the Hindustan Times that a fair bit of research showed how women in the city stayed away from being involved in Bengaluru’s cycling community and it was linked to factors ranging from safety and at times even due to self-consciousness. There was a need to promote the activity in women and improve the infrastructure in the city so that women feel safe to take part in cycling in the city, Nimisha said.
And it is not just how to teach and encourage these women how to cycle. At the Cycle School for Women, every Sunday Jhatkaa and ‘Pedal for Tandem’ organises workshops for women at Church Street in the city that focusses on mainly two aspects of it. Firstly, the initiative aims to teach women how to cycle. Additionally, the group also teaches these women participants the basic skills on how to repair a cycle, such as the tyre so that they are not dependent on anyone and can keep using them to travel.
Bengaluru Moving cycling workshops for women where you can learn how to cycle and fix a puncture. This workshop series has no hidden costs and is free for public.Sign up in our bio and here : https://t.co/OAnzo1dSM3… pic.twitter.com/qG8s1dHLpG
— Jhatkaa.org (@Jhatkaadotorg) March 25, 2021
For women, there are several issues that hinder women from freely using cycles as a means of transport. Infrastructure problems, restricted knowledge of cycles are some of the few issues that pose as problems for women to take to cycling on a long-term basis.
The initiative has received considerably good response from women across the city who have signed up for the workshops.