Eliot Jackson’s Grow Cycling Foundation Announces Additional Supporters & Fundraising Goals

Sep 16, 2020
by Brian Park  

When Eliot Jackson launched the Grow Cycling Foundation to promote diversity and equality in cycling last month, the reaction here was overwhelmingly supportive. Equity in education, access, and opportunity do not inherently exist for all, and it will take hard work and commitment to make sure the sport and experiences we love are accessible to everyone.

A month later we wanted to share an update.

First off, thank you for the support. The cycling community’s donations have topped $15K already, not including any of the corporate donations. Every little bit helps—please consider donating.

One of Grow Cycling’s first projects is building a world class pumptrack in a historically diverse neighbourhood of Los Angeles. The foundation has made a lot of progress on the pumptrack logistics, and an announcement about its location will be coming very soon.

Some things are bigger than an individual or a company, so Pinkbike and the other founding partners Santa Cruz, Fox, and Yeti Cycles, have set a goal of helping raise $500K for the foundation to do its work. The group will be doing a combination of cash donations, fundraising, and other efforts to achieve that goal, so that one day, no matter what race, background, or sexual orientation, everyone can feel like they belong in the cycling world.
Grow Cycling Foundation
Velosolutions is on board to help construct a world class pumptrack.

Since the foundation was announced there has been an outpouring of support from the industry. Brands like Shimano, SRAM, Rapha, Maxxis, Velosolutions, Pivot Cycles, Fat Tire, Giant Bicycles, BeGood Foundation, SAXX Underwear, Hydro Flask, Blackheart Bike Co, FATMAP, Blister Review, and more have come on board. Each brand has contributed things like money, products, and time in the form of donation matches, video and production support, future event assistance, and more. Outside the industry Grow Cycling was recently accepted to Benevity which gives them access to 100% matching programs for companies like Nike, Coca-Cola, Google, Apple, and about 250 of the Fortune 1000 companies. Thanks to everyone coming together to support this. We appreciate it!

The first fundraiser will be a very special bike from Yeti and Fox, so stay tuned for that tomorrow. Update: here's the giveaway. USA residents only with some restrictions

bigquotesWhen we started Grow Cycling Foundation, I never imagined we would get the outpouring of support that we did. All of the Founding Partners reached out to me personally after the catalyst that was the George Floyd murder and have been fundemental to the founding of Grow Cyling. It has been absolutely incredible to see the collaboration of unlikely partners on our weekly calls, the brainstorming and creativity, and the lack of ego from all.

Our vision is to have the entire world be part of the cycling community and as we take the first steps down that path we have met some amazing ambassadors. From unexpected people like SAXX Underwear to the less than 10 employee Blackheart Bike Company, our doors are open to all, no matter how big or small and it’s been awesome to see who has walked through them.

We are so excited to bring Grow Cycling to life and, while 99% of the work is behind the scenes and my main focus right now is building a sustainable foundation, in the coming months we will have so many awesome things for everyone here to participate in Smile .

Thanks to the Pinkbike community for all of your support! It means the world!
Eliot Jackson, Founder & Chairman of Grow Cycling Foundation

How can you help?

If you'd like to support Grow Cycling Foundation, please consider donating. The foundation is organized as a nonprofit corporation and is a 501c3 public foundation partner. All donations are tax deductible.



Founding Partners’ statements

bigquotesWe’ve known Eliot since his early days of racing on Team Yeti / Fox. I hadn’t seen Eliot for a few years when I watched a video of him sharing his thoughts on BLM and his experiences in the bike industry. It was honest, raw and emotional. After talking to him on the phone, it was clear we had work to do as a company to be more inclusive and provide more opportunities for people of color. That work is ongoing and aligns with the goals at Grow Cycling Foundation.

Eliot’s vision is bold and gives us a platform to focus on specific projects and initiatives. That’s critical because it’s easy to believe something, but more difficult to actually get something done. This organization will get things done.

Thanks Eliot and Katie. We’re looking forward to getting this rolling…
Chris Conroy, Yeti Cycles

bigquotesThe nice thing about having a corporate slogan like ‘Share The Ride’ is that when an opportunity comes along aiming to do just that, it’s easy to say yes. Our sport has a long way to go before it more accurately reflects the diverse society around us, but I’m excited to see the support from all corners. I'm especially fired up about working on a Grow Cycling internship and some of the other projects in the works. I also want to say that within the industry it's inspiring to see rivals and brands all put their egos aside to come together and support this.Brian Park, Pinkbike

bigquotesWhile Santa Cruz Bicycles has an ongoing vision for internal diversity growth, we recognize that working on tangible ways to help build a more inclusive cycling community as a whole isn't a change that'll happen overnight.

It’s easy to talk about, but much harder to do.

We are extremely excited to be part of Grow Cycling Foundation to help bridge that gap between intention and action.
Scott Turner, Santa Cruz Bicycles

bigquotesFOX was built on the idea that we only become better by listening, learning, and implementing. Bob Fox’s mantra is "we’re never done" - this philosophy is what has allowed us to reach our goal of developing the world’s best suspension, but it also guides the way we navigate everything we do. Getting to where we need to be in terms of diversity and inclusion - both internal and externally - will be a moving target much like our relentless pursuit of speed on the race course, but we’re committed to the process and extremely excited to take this big first step with Grow Cycling Foundation.Sean Estes, Fox Suspension


Grow Cycling FAQ

Is Grow Cycling just to help build inclusion for people of color or will you help other marginalized groups as well?

Historically, people of color have been largely underserved in the outdoor industry, so we are starting there with the understanding that the same systems of power that exclude people of color, exclude other marginalized groups as well. Our ultimate goal is for the world of cycling to be representative of the world around us, full of all genders, colors, and backgrounds.

How much of my donation goes to Grow Cycling initiatives?

We aren’t taking salaries or any wages to do this. Currently, everyone working at Grow Cycling Foundation is a volunteer. Aside from platform hosting fees and administrative costs, 100% of your donations go directly to Grow Cycling initiatives and are tax-deductible.

Our dream is that Grow Cycling grows large enough to have global reach which may, in the future, require full-time, salaried staff. If this happens we commit to being fully transparent with our donors and community about where their donations are going.


If I can’t donate, how can I help?

• Spread the word to your cycling friends and communities - tweet, repost, share or pin
• Tell your employer about us and ask them to share the story and get involved
• Commit to spending time educating yourself on inequalities of access to your sport or industry
• Show empathy daily and be intentional about inviting new people into your cycling circles
• Be empowered to speak up when you notice homogeneity in your companies or social circles. Ask why that might be and how you can open the doors to different groups of people


Learn more at growcyclingfoundation.org.


A note on the comments section

Pinkbike's new community guidelines aren't quite ready for prime time. So in in the meantime this is the tl;dr: don’t be racist, sexist, homophobic, or otherwise bigoted. Don’t deadname or misgender trans people. Don’t mischaracterize or discuss in bad faith. Do be constructive and welcoming. Do try to see things from others’ perspective.

We value freedom of speech in society, and we will always remain a place that encourages unvarnished, critical discussion, but Pinkbike is not a government and we will moderate this community as necessary.



42 Comments

  • 162 5
 Pinkbike community! You guys are amazing!

I am so proud to have you all as collaborators as we make progress toward everyone feeling like they belong in the world of cycling. That also includes YOU! When we say everyone, we mean EVERYONE haha.

We know it’s hard to get bikes right now and we wanted to do something special for the cycling community that is supporting bringing more people into the sport so Yeti and FOX have gotten together to do a giveaway for a CRAZY expensive and nice bike that you can find here go.rallyup.com/e38eff.

One of our core tenants is making sure we are providing value. We can do that for you guys by doing giveaways of awesome bikes and making great content (we have a collaboration with Pivot Cycles coming soon) as a few examples.

As I said in my quote, the cycling industry coming together for a cause that is bigger than competition is crazy inspiring for me and I feel like it showed here as well.

A small update from me:
Now that we have moved further in the process of finding a location, we can more accurately estimate the cost of the pumptrack and start to work on getting that cost down. We are now working to partner with development companies to provide asphalt, grading, and labor. In an ideal world, the cost would come down significantly, but we have to account for it being “retail value.” Every dollar that we can reduce the cost by can go to the next initiatives in our long term plan which is programs and building of the community (Local BBQ with a Fat Tire Beer garden anyone?). Never had so many meetings in my life haha!

We have had so many great people reach out to help, a designer reached out on Instagram and they are now helping make our newsletter. Some of our partners have even donated marketing and branding resources. We got so many messages and emails talking about just being more empathetic to new people coming into the sport and is something we can all relate to because we were all beginners at one point.

It feels like we are doing this together and that’s really cool. Thanks, everyone!
  • 21 1
 So amazing. 2020 hasn’t entirely gone down the pan.
  • 13 1
 You are a treasure, Eliot Jackson. Let's go ride some bikes.
  • 8 0
 Hi, I know a lot of 9 to 5 type folks have matching contributions to charities at their workplaces and at least I, for one, would like to contribute to Grow Cycling through this approach. Is it possible on your website you could add 501c3 information so people can take advantage of that corporate match. It's normally things like street address, 1-800 number, EIN, etc. Keep it up, because this is awesome.
  • 5 0
 Great to see everything coming together Eliot! Great work!
  • 4 0
 Hey @EliotJackson. Can you guys take a look at getting set up on YourCause? Both my company and my wife's use it as our donation matching platform and it seems like a lot of other large companies use it as well. I always try to use the 1:1 match my company offers when making charitable donations.

solutions.yourcause.com
  • 1 0
 @texascrane: Will do! Will shoot you a PM so I can get some more details through email Smile
  • 1 0
 @texascrane: Actually looks like we are in the approval process right now so we should be on there soon Smile
  • 1 0
 It's been a crazy and crappy year, but this is so awesome see happening. It's really a joy to see what you're doing. I'm working on similar stuff with my local club and may reach out to you.
  • 2 0
 @EliotJackson Thank YOU for all your hard work. It is inspiring, and we are here to support!
  • 19 0
 Sick. Way to go to all the brands stepping up. Keep building that momentum @EliotJackson!
  • 13 0
 Nice work Elliot! Nice work Santa Cruz, Fox, Yeti and the other corporate sponsors too. We're keeping track.
  • 7 0
 You sir are amazing and it is so good to see this type of inclusivity taking place. It would just be nice if you had over 700 upvotes and this article had over 440 posts, but I guess the Grim Donut...
  • 6 0
 I pity the article released on the same day as Grim Donut II.
  • 4 0
 It’s so amazing to see initiatives like this come to life in cycling and mountain biking. I want mountain biking to be a more inclusive activity and space that we all create, and I believe it to be very important to have figures like Eliot Jackson speaking time and leading those causes. Thank you! I can’t want to see how this grows and develops.
  • 1 0
 Same here! I'm very stoked on this.
  • 4 0
 Glad to hear you're getting setup with Benevity. I hadn't seen you in there but really wanted to get a corporate match. Always enjoy sending my employer's money towards good causes!
  • 3 1
 Can you imagine the talent that is coming out of this in the future, I live in the San Fernando valley and I went to check out Sawpi bike park recently and saw so many small shredders benefiting from what they’ve done over there in Thousand Oaks, I can only imagine the amazing talent that is going to manifest from this awesome idea come to life in a Hood. And the kids that will have a positive projection in life. I want to donate my time/labor when it starts to happen. Elliot you are actually doing something I’ve been thinking about for people that grow up in brown/black hoods/“underprivileged”, I hope all the logistics go as smooth as possible for this amazing foundation. God bless all the people coming together to make this as successful as it can be.
  • 6 0
 Thanks, Eliot.
  • 2 0
 Can't wait to find out which historically diverse neighborhood the pumptrack will be located. I'm rooting for Boyle Heights. Thank you for doing this Elliot, looking forward to getting involved.
  • 5 0
 RAD
  • 5 0
 Two thumbs way up.
  • 4 0
 Donation made. Thanks Elliot! tup
  • 2 0
 Donation made. Funny that it's a Yeti and not Giant considering it's Elliot Jackson's initiative? I wouldn't say no to one of those $10k Trances...
  • 3 0
 Fantastic. all the luck in the world to you!
  • 3 3
 I never had a football team in high school. I’m over it
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