Elves & More is a charity group founded by David More, the former boss of Accenture. Their basic mission is to give free bikes to needy kids. Below is a message I sent out to my MS 150 team.
From a cyclist's view, Elves & More (http://www.elvesandmore.org/)has got to be the greatest charity group ever! The idea of rolling up out of the blue and giving a bike to a needy kid is fantastic, but to do that 25,000 times in a single city is mind-blowing.
They need our help to do this. Between shipping delays & the west coast longshoreman's strike, assembly of the bikes is far behind schedule. If you can help, now is the time, be it an hour or a day.
Do you remember your first bike? I do. Help a needy kid have one to remember.
From: David L. More Founder, Elves & More [mailtoavid_L._More_Founder_Elves__M_gqvqtr@postsnet.com]
Sent: Thursday, December 16, 2004 5:35 PM
Subject: We Need Volunteers
I know you must feel whipsawed by the start/slowdown messages you've received on the Elves & More Christmas Program. It's been even more maddening for us, believe you me. But now the bikes are here, and time is very short. We simply cannot afford to let down the kids.
Progress (or lack of it):
3,500 bikes have been built thru December 15, through the heroic efforts of a few committed volunteers. 2,000 unbuilt bikes are in Reliant Center now.
17,300 more bikes must be built, and only days remain before Christmas. 10,000 of these are here in Houston, and offloading at Reliant early Thursday morning. The rest are arriving late Friday.
5,000 Treasure Boxes full of 30,000 gifts must be packed and wrapped. Gifts are arriving at Reliant Thursday and Friday. View our webcams and you'll see where we are (or aren't) at any point in time. http://www.elvesandmore.org/pages.asp?pageid=14890
Come on out to Reliant Center, Halls A & B, Thursday night, Friday night, all day Saturday, and (now), all day Sunday, Monday and Tuesday until all the bikes are built, and all the gifts are in the boxes, wrapped and ready to go.
The full schedule is shown below.
We need your help now!
None of these bikes or gifts will get to the children for Christmas unless you help make it happen.
Don't wait on anyone else to do it. They won't. Only you can make it happen. Come early, come often, and stay as long as you can. Bring your family and your friends, your colleagues and your clubs. Please!
And, tell everyone you know!
Thank you for helping the kids!
Founder, Elves & More www.elvesandmore.org Tel: (713) 907-5674 "Bringing hope to impoverished children--one bike at a time!"
TIMETABLE (as of midnight December 15):
Wednesday, December 15
3,500 bikes built to date,
17,300 more to build
Thursday, December 16
5:00PM to 10PM
Friday, December 17
5:00PM to 10PM *
Saturday, December 18
9:00AM to 10PM
Sunday, December 19
9:00AM to 10PM
Monday, December 20
9:00AM to 10PM
Tuesday December 21
9:00AM to 10PM
Wednesday December 22
To be determined
Thursday, December 23
Load up of 225 trucks from Noon till Midnight
Friday, December 24
Debrief at 7:30AM, Roll-out to neighborhoods
at 9:30AM and give it all away!
* Come assemble during the day if you are skilled in bike-building and can work on your own without supervision. If you'd like to bring out your team during either day, just email me and we'll provide such support as we can.
Reliant Center is located at Kirby Drive at McNee, just one mile north of I-610. Halls A&B are located at the east (far) end of the Center. Park in the Orange Lot, just in front of (south of) Halls A & B. You may be charged a parking fee of $7.00 per vehicle, which will be borne by volunteers. (We're facing a severe cash crunch now, and are struggling mightily to make it up. If you think you can help solve this too, please email me.)
If you don't have tools, you can use ours. If you have your own, bike assembly requires: 12mm, 13mm, 14mm, and 15mm wrenches, a 6mm Allen wrench (for some models), a #2 Phillips head screwdriver, and a pair of scissors or other tool to cut plastic bindings on the packaging.
We have all the tools needed for Treasure Box packing and wrapping.
Bicycle load-up into delivery trucks will take place on December 23rd, starting at noon and will continue until all 225 trucks are loaded. We're perennially short of volunteers on this day.
Delivery to Kids--December 24
Delivery of bikes and gifts will take place on the morning of December 24th, with volunteers arriving for a briefing at 7:30AM and rolling out into the neighborhoods at 9:30AM. Most volunteers will finish their delivery by 1:00PM, but about 15% of the volunteers will go out for a longer "run" or go out for a second round of deliveries.
Where We'll Deliver Bikes and Gifts
In general, our neighborhood deliveries will occur within an area bounded by Conroe in the north, to Galveston in the South, to Pasadena in the east and to Katy in the west. Draw a big circle around those and you'll get the idea. There are 263,000 children living below the Poverty Line in this area, and we will reach 25,000 of them this year.
We must keep the locations of the specific neighborhoods we will visit a closely guarded secret until the day we arrive, on Christmas Eve.
We do that in order to avoid having far more kids "waiting" in a neighborhood than we can serve. If secrecy were not maintained, the telephones would start ringing and kids would appear from other neighborhoods in such large numbers they could not be served.
Thank you for your support of the kids!
David L. Moore
Founder, Elves & More