Volunteering with Beartown Rickshaw

Beartown Rickshaw is run entirely by volunteers; most of our volunteers are riders but we also welcome administrators and anyone who is good at publicity or has experience in the care sector. If you have a skill that you think is useful then please get in touch (admin@btrickshaw.uk); we would love to hear from you.

Our administrators are the link between our customers and our riders. They coordinate rides so that an outrider, rider and rickshaw turn up as agreed with the customer at the right time and right place.

[you can download a pdf of this information here]

Beartown Rickshaw is a charity that was set up in early 2022 to give free rides to local people experiencing limited mobility or social isolation. 

It is vital our volunteer rickshaw riders are suitable for taking out vulnerable people such as our passengers, and so we have a rigorous selection procedure. We reserve the right to turn down applications.


Description of rider’s role

Volunteer riders take clients out for short rides around the town using the rickshaw. 

Rides are pre-booked and you will be given the details of the passengers, the pick-up address and any relevant additional information.

Riders must wear their BT Rickshaw ID cards and hi-vis gilets (provided) whilst using the rickshaw.

You will collect the rickshaw from a base location in town, then ride it to the passenger’s home (or day centre), pick up the passenger and their carer, or two passengers together, take them for a ride, then return them home.

The purpose of the rickshaw ride is to get people out of their four walls and into the world, to cheer them up and decrease their isolation. Volunteer riders are strongly encouraged to chat to the passengers and listen to their stories. 

You will be responsible for the rickshaw whilst you are using it, reporting any mechanical or other problems immediately and making sure it is secure at all times and not left unattended.

Riders, passengers and the rickshaw are fully insured, provided you act with due care and attention. Passengers must either be accompanied by a carer, or be able to self-care. Under 18s must be accompanied by a responsible adult.

You are not required to do any physical lifting of passengers, or to have any relationship with the passengers beyond the rides. It is important to remember that we are simply offering friendly bike rides; we are not carers or a befriending service. Having said that, we anticipate developing links with other services that our passengers might find helpful.

You can decide where to take the passengers, and the route may depend on where you are collecting them from, what is happening in the town (eg market day), if they have any special requests, the frailty of the passengers, the weather, and any time constraints. We also have standard routes that you can use. You will have a two-hour window for your shift, in which to collect the rickshaw, do the ride, and return it to base.

Suzie and Liz talking