These volunteers help the homeless by repairing their bikes

Volunteers help the homeless overcome transportation issues by repairing their bikes.

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Friday afternoons, bicycles are scattered along the sidewalk leading up to the doors of the Sister Mary Alice Murphy Center for Hope, 242 Conifer St., in Fort Collins.

Their owners hover around a makeshift bike repair shop out front, pointing out broken parts and squeaky wheels to the volunteers who share their repair skills each week.

Some days, the fixes are simple — a patch here or a twist of an Allen wrench there. On others, a new bike rises from a pile of used parts.

Murphy Center volunteer Mark Brewer started the homeless day shelter and service hub's repair program — a recipient of the Coloradoan's Make a Difference Day Bike Drive — in January. Since then, Brewer and a handful of volunteers, including homeless individuals who have benefited from the program, have performed more than 170 bike repairs.

No matter how simple or complicated the repair, Brewer said the bikes moving on and off the repair racks each week are life-changing for the people who now have free, reliable transportation.

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