Little Bears will explore nature through pedal power
FRESH air and a sea breeze will benefit children at one pre-school as staff cycle up to eight children to sites such as Portelet, the Fairy Ring and Torteval’s bird hide.
Two cargo bikes purchased by the Little Bears Nature Pre-school will take children on outings to nearby beaches and nature reserves, embracing an eco-friendly approach to active transport which they hope will encourage families to get out into nature more and use their cars less.
Eli Vidamour, 4, looked on in excitement at the prospect of being able to go out in the pre-school’s new vehicles as several children tried out sitting inside a cargo bike.
‘It was good, I enjoy my mum’s bike, so it’ll be fun,’ he said.
Manager and owner of the pre-school Karen Isabelle said children would benefit from the initiative.
‘The children are better for having been outside, so they’ll really enjoy this,’ she said.
‘They’ll get to go out into the real world environment and experience the sights, sounds and smells of what their surroundings provide. It’s great because they get to have a lot of fun at the same time as getting a lot of fresh air, which is really good for their wellbeing.’
The pre-school is said to have been inspired by one family, who also have a cargo bike, to take up the idea.
‘We need to get used to the bikes with four children in each of them, but as soon as we feel comfortable we will get out there and explore,’ Ms Isabelle said.
‘If we can encourage other families to consider using pedal power rather than a car then that is another advantage to this initiative.’
The Health Improvement Commission is also keen on the new scheme. The commission’s active travel officer, Nix Petit, said the bikes were fantastic for the St Peter’s setting.
‘They’re a fantastic addition at the pre-school,’ she said.
‘Not only will they benefit the health of the children here at the pre-school, encouraging them to be active from an early age, but also the staff’s too.
‘It will benefit the physical, social, mental health and wellbeing of all those who use the bikes.’
The pre-school thanked Ian Brown for sponsoring the bikes and is eager for additional sponsors to support the initiative.