About us

The Bike Project is a community of refugees, cyclists, mechanics and volunteers.

Our mission is simple: to take second-hand bikes, fix them up in our workshop and give them to refugees.

We also run group cycle training for refugee women in London and Birmingham. The lessons empower and inspire women to feel the freedom of their very own bike – perhaps for the first time in their lives.

As well as our charitable activities, we sell a proportion of our wonderful refurbished bikes to the general public through our online bike shop. Every single penny we make from bike sales is ploughed straight back into the charity. This much-needed cash injection helps secure our long-term sustainability – and that means even more refugees cycling!

We’re a fast growing project and have a warm welcome ready for anyone keen to volunteer, learn practical skills and meet funky people. If that’s you, drop us a line!

Operations Team

Jem Stein

Founder & CEO

I set up The Bike Project after seeing how much my brother’s old bike helped Adam, a Darfuri refugee I mentored at university.

I set up The Bike Project after seeing how much my brother’s old bike helped Adam, a Darfuri refugee I mentored at university. For the last ten years I have worked with a range of colleagues, volunteers and refugees as well as asylum seekers to expand our bike donation programs, Pedal Power and Bike Buddies and more.

Nicola Hill

Head of Impact

Nicola was a major force behind organising our Critical Mass bike ride to Calais in 2015.

Nicola was a major force behind organising our Critical Mass bike ride to Calais in 2015. She then began volunteering as an instructor at our cycle training for refugee women on Wednesdays. With a mixed background of consulting, operational management, cycle programme delivery and migrant sector experience under her belt, she was a natural choice to take up the role of Head of Impact at The Bike Project and has been a full timer since June 2016.

Muna Hussen

Head of Marketing and Fundraising

I’ve had a lifelong interest in refugee and asylum seeker stories, fuelled by my own experience.

I’ve had a lifelong interest in refugee and asylum seeker stories, fuelled by my own experience and those of my near family. Joining The Bike Project means I can take my considerable marketing experience to ultimately help our key mission: get more refugees cycling. Leading on our marketing means I get to tell the amazing stories of our staff, volunteers, beneficiaries and most of all, the epic tale of The Bike Project.

Sarah Avery

Head of Operations

Sarah is the Head of Operations, supporting refugees with access to Bike Donations.

Sarah joined our organisation as Head of Operations and has been working with the team to organise and faciliate bike donations to refugees across both London and the West Midlands. Her role includes supporting the team with managing our many drop-off points as well.

Margaret Cheng

HR Manager

Margaret particularly loves working in small, growing organisations and spends half her week now providing part time, HR support for her favourite organisation (i.e. The Bike Project).

Alongside working in a small organisation, Margaret spend half her week now providing part time, HR support for her favourite organisation (i.e. The Bike Project). She spends the other half of the week on creative writing projects.

Charlotte Hu

Digital Marketing Manager

Charlotte looks after the charity’s digital presence, as part of the Marketing team.

When you believe in the impact of a charity’s mission, the work day honestly flies by! My challenge, as part of the marketing team, is to get the rest of the world see it too. The digital space can be very hostile and demoralising, so we’re doing our part to change the narrative and combat the stigma and false assumptions about refugees. When I’m not at work, you’ll find me eating my way through London, bingeing true crime podcasts, or laughing at screaming huskies on TikTok.

Yasmin Nestor

Operations Manager

Yasmin joins the organisation from a diverse background in project and events co-ordination.

Yasmin joins the organisation from a diverse background in project and events co-ordination, where she developed her organic ability to create relationships and passion for process driven administration.

Having spent 5 years in the Royal Air Force serving as a Medic. Yas toured the UK and overseas, It was here she saw the devastating impact of war on human lives. Yasmin believes as a Medic she was able to help those most impacted by conflict. Here at The Bike Project she is able to continue in her wholehearted commitment to be of service to impactful change. The role as Operations Coordinator at The Bike Project was made her!

Yasmin loves travelling – she spent 6 months in South East Asia where she lived on a shoestring, avoided the beaten track and ate her body weight in $1 noodles (which she still does!). When she is not playing air guitar to disco classics or re-watching episodes of RuPauls Drag Race (Yaaaas Queen!) you can find her in the Pub with her dog Rudy Rudes.

Yasmin’s’ Bike Fact: Her first adult bike was given to her by her best friend. The main purpose of this bike was to get her to and from work

Anya Jhoti

Marketing Executive

Anya tells our charity’s stories and works across all our marketing campaigns.

I have worked and studied supporting refugees and people on the move in various roles for the last five years. I am driven to create a U.K. where all people are treated with dignity, respect, and solidarity. As the Marketing Executive, I work with bike recipients, fundraisers, and volunteers to create content together about people’s stories, wider refugee issues, and the impact of The Bike Project.

Felix Ford

Fundraising Executive

As Fundraising Executive, Felix interacts with both fundraisers, donors and refugees.

I enjoy speaking to all the like-minded people that raise money for The Bike Project who want to help achieve our mission of getting refugees and asylum seekers cycling. I also thoroughly enjoy helping out at donation sessions, where we get to meet our bike recipients and watch them pedal away on their new steeds!

Working with refugees is important because being uprooted from your home and having to start life again in a different country would be daunting for anyone, let alone when laws make it even harder to do so. The benefits a bike can bring are endless, so giving them to those who need them is one small way we can help people gain stability.

What gets me out of bed in the morning is going to watch my local grassroots football team, Clapton Community FC. This followed by a Dhansak curry and mushroom rice is my ideal Saturday! (preferably after a win)

Kessem Adiv

Pedal Power Manager

Kessem runs Pedal Power- our programme that teaches refugee and asylum seeking women how to cycle and provides community through social events and mechanic sessions.

Kessem runs Pedal Power- our programme that teaches refugee and asylum seeking women how to cycle and provides community through social events and mechanic sessions.

Workshop and Retail Team

Without our mighty mechanics and fantabulous shop team members, we couldn’t refurbish so many beaten-up bikes and get them into the hands of refugees and the paying customers who help fund the project. Love them!

Stu Harwood-Hope

Chief Operating Officer

Stu is our Chief Operating Officer, overseeing all operations activities. Best known for daring repairs, rapping, drinking decaf-tea and teaching mechanics to refugees.

Stu is our mechanic-in-chief. Best known for daring repairs, rapping, drinking decaf-tea and teaching mechanics to refugees.

Aged 15, Stu started tinkering with bikes down in Suffolk’s sunny Center Parcs, practising his fine bike-polishing techniques on kids’ Burley trailers in their cycle hire outlet. He soon completed his Cytech Level 2 qualification and progressed to the role of Mr Manager, ending up with a fleet of 2000 hire bikes under his charge.

After moving to London, Stu worked as a freelance mobile repair mechanic and did a stint at Evans Cycles in Canary Wharf.

Since then, there’s been no turning back. He’s done the rounds at a whole host of bike cafes, high-end independent bike shops and community Dr Bike events.

As a result, he’s come face-to-face with an impressive range of bikes – from £9,000 professional race bikes to classic vintage Italian road bikes. If they’ve made it, Stu’s fixed it!

Stu now spends half the week running his own private repairs business (Hackney Bike Repairs) and the other half at The Bike Project.

We asked Stu what he likes about fixing bikes: ‘The pleasure in my work comes from the reaction you get when you get a person’s tired but much loved old bike fully serviced and working like new.’

Joshua Norbury

Workshop Manager

Joshua is the West Midlands Workshop Manager In Birmingham. He is a very keen cyclist and is as enthusiastic about fixing bikes as he is riding them!

Joshua is the senior mechanic at the West Midlands Workshop In Birmingham. He is a very keen cyclist and is as enthusiastic about fixing bikes as he is riding them! Throughout his childhood he always tinkered and repaired anything he could get his hands on including an old 1976 Honda CB125 motorbike which he later crashed and wrote off – opps! Joshua is also very enthusiastic about life and making the most of it, he often takes part in cycle camping and touring around Europe.

During his later years Joshua always wanted a vocation where he could use his skills and knowledge to help enrich other people’s lives, which this offers him. He thoroughly enjoys sharing his knowledge and helping other progress in their mechanical journey!

Callum Harbord

Workshop Manager

Callum is our London Workshop Manager in Deptford.

Callum is our London Workshop Manager in Deptford.

Resom Michael

Senior Mechanic

Resom grew up in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. Hard to believe it now, but he never had a bike growing up and had to save up just to hire one for a couple of hours.

Resom grew up in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia. Hard to believe it now, but he never had a bike growing up and had to save up just to hire one for a couple of hours.

Resom came to London as a refugee 7 years ago and first heard about The Bike Project from a friend.

He jumped at the chance to get one of our free bikes and soon became a fixture in the workshop as a keen volunteer.

After finishing his City & Guilds Level 2 bike mechanic qualification in 2015, Resom joined the team as a fully fledged mechanic and has been absolutely integral to improvements in our workshop playlist ever since. 😉

Resom rides a gorgeous Iro single speed and enjoys cycling the Paddington canal path on his way to work.

A man of many talents, Resom balances his time in the workshop with training as a software engineer (don’t leave us!) and long and short distance running. He loves a flapjack.

Marta Terruzzi

Retail Operations Manager

Marta is a designer-maker with a passion for cycling. She joined The Bike Project in 2018.

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Marta is a designer-maker with a passion for cycling. She joined The Bike Project in 2018 and is rapidly improving her bike mechanic skills as our workshop assistant while also working on our Pedal Power programme.

When she was 19 Marta rode her dad’s 1960s city bike on an epic tour through South France, carrying all her camping gear in a trekking backpack.

She’s also got a keen eye for accessories and loves repurposing retired sports equipment and textiles to make new products. Her studio is filled with colourful useless items.

Marta believes in cycling as a force for good and empowerment, particularly for women.

Cath Palgrave

Workshop Assistant / Cycle Instructor

Cath’s first bike was rescued from a skip by her uncle, which she learned to ride and unfortunately break straight away!

Cath’s first bike was rescued from a skip by her uncle, which she learned to ride and unfortunately break straight away! She has ridden a number of both rubbish and quite good bikes ever since. Her work in environmental campaigning encouraged her to cycle for transport rather than drive, including cycling to her previous job- teaching English in Hungary! She has had a number of jobs and roles, including recycling, primary school teacher, helping schools gain School of Sanctuary awards (making then a place of welcome for refugees and asylum seekers) and leading Forest Schools. She left the woods for her current role as a workshop assistant and Pedal Power instructor in July 2019 when she joined The Bike Project, bringing her environmental and refugee supporting roles together.

Matthew Miller

Senior Mechanic

Matt is a Senior Mechanic in the London Workshop, handling jobs from servicing to shelf construction and everything in between.

Matt is a Senior Mechanic in the London Workshop, handling jobs from servicing to shelf construction and everything in between.

Maria Domenech Serrano

Lead Technician

Leaving her little coastal town near Barcelona nearly 20 years ago, London is what Maria calls home.

Leaving her little coastal town near Barcelona nearly 20 years ago, London is what Maria calls home. After a long stint in the food industry, she trained as a Cycling Instructor and has been teaching children, adults and anyone who cared to listen for the last 8 years.

She qualified as a mechanic whilst instructing, and 3 years ago started doing the odd week at the Project’s workshop.  She’s been part of the family since the start of Summer 2020, and could not be happier!

Charlie Blair

Senior Technician

Charlie rarely sits still and is often on the move between all The Bike Project sites.

Charlie rarely sits still and is often on the move between all The Bike Project sites. Whether in the office, in the workshop or out delivering cycle training at our 3 Pedal Power locations, you can easily find her by following the trail left by her unrelenting ice cream soda and M&M habit.

Charlie built up her first bike at university. After graduating she spent two years in Beijing where she revelled in being surrounded by millions of bikes and built a bike frame from bamboo!

After another year riding around Corsica, she came back to London and began volunteering at The Bike Project; eager to share the joys, freedom and exploration that a bike can open up to everyone, especially those in a new country.

Jason Villada

Senior Technician

Jason is a senior technician at our Deptford workshop, often running the donation sessions.

Jason is a senior technician at our Deptford workshop, often running the donation sessions. Jason loves cycling (of course!), travelling, photography, and ad restoration projects!

Jon Machen

Bike Processor

Jon has worked across a number of roles at The Bike Project since 2018. He is now the first point of contact at the London workshop for bikes arriving from our drop-off points.

Jon has worked across a number of roles at The Bike Project since 2018. He is now the first point of contact at the London workshop for bikes arriving from our drop-off points. He assess all bikes for safety and ensures they are accurately recorded on our internal systems.

Our Trustees

Our trusty trustees are a treasure trove of experience, full of invaluable business and charity know-how that has been a huge factor in our success and our ambitions for the future. Hat tip.

Doug Krikler

Chair of Trustees

Doug has extensive experience in both the non-profit and private sector with roles ranging from commercial and business development to international development work in the Middle East.

Doug has extensive experience in both the non-profit and private sector with roles ranging from commercial and business development to international development work in the Middle East. Prior to becoming our Chair of Trustees, Doug has supported and watched The Bike Project grow and change over the years. In Doug’s view, “The organisation takes a commercial approach to a social need and achieves great results through that. The Bike Project has identified the fact that transport and mobility is key to social integration, participation and inclusion in general, and access to services and employment opportunities in particular. This is really important, and recognising that the transport hurdle remains a key deterrent to autonomy for individuals. It’s wholly true that we can only participate once we have access to transport.”

Annie Kurian

HR Trustee

Annie Kurian is a Global Human Resource professional with over 12 years of end-to-end HR experience in diverse industries.

Annie Kurian is a Global Human Resource professional with over 12 years of end-to-end HR experience in diverse industries.

Jeremy Sandelson

Corporate Partnerships Trustee

Pro-Chancellor of the University for the Creative Arts, Trustee of the Clore Duffield Foundation and Trustee of the Hampstead Theatre Tickets.

Jeremy Sandelson is Pro-Chancellor of the University for the Creative Arts, Trustee of the Clore Duffield Foundation and Trustee of the Hampstead Theatre Tickets.

Jeremy is a partner of Clifford Chance, solicitors where he was head of the firms dispute resolution practice from 2009-17 having previously been regional partner in the UK and the Middle East.

He has wide experience of resolving complex disputes and is a qualified CEDR mediator.

Will Cardy

Digital Marketing Trustee

Will is an online marketing expert from an agency called Platypus Digital.

Will is an online marketing expert from an agency called Platypus Digital. Like many of our volunteers, he approached us offering his skills rather than the other way round. He helped us secure a Google grant worth $10k per month in in-kind support and has managed our online marketing ever since. His work has directly contributed tens of thousands of pounds in the form of donations and bike sales not to mention a whole host of other benefits. He does speak mainly in three letter acronyms (PPC, SEO, ROI) but whatever he does it seems to work! We’re delighted to have him as a trustee.

Hala Mkhallalati

Trustee with Lived Experience

With my background as a pharmacist and public health researcher means I know how important these things are.

With my background as a pharmacist and public health researcher means I know how important these things are. I’m excited to help the organisation highlight this aspect of our work even more.

Comfort Adeyemi

Trustee with Lived Experience

I’ve gone through every part of the bike project. Participant, volunteer, bike recipient, instructor.

I’ve gone through every part of the bike project. Participant, volunteer, bike recipient, instructor – I know as much as possible what it is like for the average person going through the process. I believe I will be able to share that experience with those on the Board.”

Victoria Kershaw

Legal Trustee

Victoria is a solicitor specialising in corporate law, and has over 25 years of experience working at City law firms, commuting by bike.

Victoria is a solicitor specialising in corporate law, and has over 25 years of experience working at City law firms, commuting by bike. She currently works at international law firm Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer in a professional support role, advising on corporate law and corporate governance matters. Victoria has previously volunteered as a charity trustee for a local school charity

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