Published December 16, 2012
An Arizona church program started by an anonymous donor more than 20 years ago that gives out bicycles to underprivileged children is continuing the tradition this holiday season.
The Phoenix First Assembly church donated 5,000 bikes to children Saturday morning, MyFoxPhoenix.com reported.
The program started more than 20 years ago with 50 bicycles and one donor, and that same donor has increased the number of bicycles he gives away every year as the need increases within the community.
"We go out every Saturday and we reach out to the most hurting people in the city and we understand that every year this will probably be the only Christmas gift they receive," Luke Barnett, lead pastor at Phoenix First Assembly, told the station.
Barnett says tickets are distributed a few days in advance and all 5,000 bikes are spoken for, but people still line up as early as 5 a.m.
Any bicycles left over will be given to children on an Indian reservation; there are about 100 kids there on a waiting list.