During Ride and Stride Week 2016, we chatted to Jenny Rose and Bronwyn Thomas at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead about BUGs!
What’s a BUG?
The Bicycle User Group (BUG) is a common name for a social group with members who love bicycles! The Westmead BUG was formed at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead over eight years ago.
How many members are there?
About 150. Members include staff and students at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead, Westmead Hospital and Cumberland Hospitals as well as the neighbouring medical research instutes (MRIs), Children's Medical Research Institute (CMRI) and Westmead Infitute of Medical Research (WIMR).
What role does the BUG play and how does it support/promote active transport?
We encourage and support staff to ride, and also advocate for improvements for cyclists on campus and on route to campus, from small things like getting the boom gates shortened to allow cyclists to safely pass, too much bigger and harder things like new end-of-trip facilities and work with local councils on route improvements and new cycle maps.
In the past we've done regular meetings, workshops and other things. We ran a successful series of practical learn to ride plus ride to work workshops that ran over several weekends, organised bike buddies to show new riders the best routes to work and bike buses to help build cyclists confidence on the roads. We have a page on the Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network intranet that promotes riding to work. We respond to individual requests for advice from students/staff for routes and other questions.
We've done lots of advocacy and fundraising. For example, a Starbucks grant paid for the bike racks in the Chinese garden and out the front of hospital. We've had teams in the Spring Cycle and Gear Up Girl and Sydney to Gong events.
Can people join the BUG? If so, how?
Contact the BUG team on CHWBUG@chw.edu.au or 9845 2515 or 9845 1204 to find out more.
Anything you would like to add about cycling, and the benefits of events like Ride2Work Day?
Some staff are very passionate about Ride to Work Day [known as Ride2Work Day], as it promotes a sense of community in the hospitals, particular for staff who work in isolation. Some staff are very passionate about Ride to Work Day, as it promotes a sense of community in the hospitals, particularly for staff who work in isolation. Cycling to work is often better, and quicker than driving, and it sure beats sitting in traffic or searching for a car park. Cycling is an inexpensive, low impact, environmentally friendly form of transport and a fun way to keep fit and healthy. As Health and medical researchers we feel we should be the ones leading the charge, advocating and supporting active transport options.