2011: A Year in Review
Phew–what a year! From exciting partnerships, to new campaigns, to events, and much more, 2011 has been an eventful one for the PCC. We hope you’ll enjoy our recap of 2011 in the following narrative. None of our successes and advancements would be possible without the support of our members and donors, so thank you for your continued engagement and investment in our mission to make SC more bicycle friendly.
The year began with a fresh shipment of bicycle lights, helmets and reflective gear, which we allocated to a dozen partners and organizations throughout South Carolina. This effort is made possible because of our partners at Department of Health and Environmental Control–specifically within the Division of Injury & Violence Prevention and Emergency Medical Services for Children. We continued to work throughout the year with these communities, ensuring that they were able to get these materials into the hands of those that need them most.
|Congressman Scott’s Charleston office.|
We also spent much of January preparing for February in-district meetings with a few of SC’s members of Congress. The purpose of these meetings were to engage the members in important bicycle and pedestrian activities happening locally and statewide. These visits rode on the coattails of our March visit to Washington DC for the National Bike Summit. During Bike Summit, the PCC coordinates and attends meetings with all eight SC members of Congress. Keeping South Carolina’s bicycling voice heard on capitol hill is a very important part of our work!
In May, we were delighted to learn of Hilton Head Island’s designation as a silver Bicycle Friendly Community–a designation which PCC staff and Board have been working very hard for several years to achieve.
|Presentation of the BFC award from the League to the Mayor of Hilton Head|
Also in May, we achieved a very important personnel milestone, with the hiring of Cait Costello as full-time membership and communications director. With Cait’s hire, the PCC earned its second ever full-time staff person. Speaking of personnel, later in the summer, we were able to invite Phoebe Byers to join us through a practicum internship opportunity with USC’s School of Public Health. Phoebe’s focus has been on a South Carolina complete streets campaign.
|A snapshot from a Safe Streets PSA|
The last bit of exciting May news came during bike-to-work-week: the launch of our strategic bicycle safety campaign, Safe Streets Save Lives. This project a partnership between the Coalition and Bike Law, SC’s leading bicycle advocacy organizations, working for the improved safety of all bicyclists on the state’s roadways. During the summer and fall months, we began work on phase two of this campaign, which will triple our funding and significantly grow the capacity of the project. The details of this phase are forthcoming in 2012.
In addition to the Safe Streets and Complete Streets Campaigns, we spent much of the 2011 summer working on various local issues, on topics relating to the SC Department of Transportation, and on our Palmetto Joyride partnership with Palmetto Conservation Foundation. With Palmetto Joyride, we were able to bring author and transportation expert Mia Birk to South Carolina to share her wisdom and inspiration with local leaders, community members, and many others in Charleston, Columbia and Greenville.
Following the excitement that Joyride stirred up, we cruised through the fall months into an exciting November and December. In November, we hosted the Alliance for Biking and Walking’s Winning Campaigns Training, a bootcamp for bike/ped advocates. Just a week later, we hosted a complete streets workshop along with our partners Eat Smart Move More, SC and AARP of SC. We were able to make this great progress on the SC Complete Streets Campaign thanks to the work of Phoebe and funding from ESMMSC and AARP.
|Group discussion during the Complete Streets workshop|
Also in the fall, Cait spearheaded a fundraising and membership effort, to reignite and re-engage former members of the PCC in our current work. With this campaign, the PCC Board and membership raised over $5,000 in very valuable funds to support our growing work and needs.
Finally, with December, we have two important meetings planned; first, with complete streets advocates around South Carolina, led by the Executive Director of the National Coalition, Barbara McCann. Second, we are hosting a meeting of city and town leaders to discuss bicycle policy and best practices in South Carolina.
Looking ahead, we have no intentions to slow down. We plan to continue working with Bike Law on our Safe Streets campaigns, to continue our Complete Streets campaign, and to further develop our SC cities/towns task force. We are looking forward to hosting a League Cycling Instructor seminar in 2012, as well as regional bicycle summits throughout SC. We are planning a May bike month commuter challenge, and are looking forward to launching a statewide bicycle route mapping effort.
It’s been a fabulous year, and we have many exciting advancements and events to look endeavor in 2012. We look forward to working with you to make these efforts a reality.