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How a teacher’s love of cycling and a nation-wide call for donations started Yarralin’s first bike club

How a teacher's love of cycling and a nation-wide call for donations started Yarralin's first bike club

A bike club in Yarralin.(Roxanne Fitzgerald) Barefoot with helmets strapped tight, speeding past ageing houses and along dusty red tracks, dodging stray dogs and potholes,…

Thursday, Apr 28

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A bike club in Yarralin.(Roxanne Fitzgerald) Barefoot with helmets strapped tight, speeding past ageing houses and along dusty red tracks, dodging stray dogs and potholes, the kids revel in cheers from the sidelines.

It is race day in Yarralin, and almost everyone in town has come to watch.

Parents yell encouragement from their fences, one of the local police officers acts as the unofficial timekeeper and the Mayor is there to rally the cyclists across the finish line.

It is a handicap race for all ages and abilities, on donated bikes that are wearing out quickly from overuse. Students of all ages, teachers and community members line up in preparation for the big race.(ABC Katherine: Roxanne Fitzgerald) One year ago, working bicycles did not exist in Yarralin — a tiny Indigenous community in the Northern Territory, connected only by miles of treacherous dirt road in one of the most remote corners of Australia.

But now, the bike club that started with one teacher’s love of cycling and a nationwide call-out for donations, has transformed an entire town and captured the hearts of nearly every resident.

"Everyone can’t wait to ride the bikes," 10-year-old Olivia Rankin says. "All of us at the school had never [ridden] bikes." Justin Campbell (centre) says everyone gets excited about bike rides and exploring their country. (ABC Katherine: Roxanne Fitzgerald) Eager students race to school

For years, Wesley Campbell’s job as the supervisor of the Remote School Attendance Strategy was a herculean task. Traditional owner, Wesley Campbell says weekly […]

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