TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Friday marked the final day of the iCan Bike Camp in Terre Haute. The week-long program helps teach children with intellectual disabilities how to ride a bike, and is the first of its kind to come to Terre Haute.
According to the iCan Bike website, over 80 percent of children with Down Syndrome and 90 percent of children with autism never learn to ride a bicycle.
But this week at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, 14 participating kids learned that very skill, working with volunteers on adaptive bikes first before making their way to the outdoor track to ride independently.
Down Syndrome Indiana Terre Haute Community Group Leader Dixie Russell says the camp was a great opportunity for the kids to build self-confidence.
“Universally, kids want to ride bikes, that’s a mode of transportation, a way to interact with peers, so to give kids with disabilities that opportunity, to do what their peers are doing is pretty cool. I think that they all feel pretty amazing, you know, we’ve got kids that their siblings kinda bypassed them riding a bike, so just to have that accomplishment that they can do, or they can do it before their siblings or with their peers, it’s just a real confidence booster,” said Russell.
Russell says Down Syndrome Indiana would be interested in bringing another iCan Bike camp to Terre Haute in the future.