CHARLOTTE – A group of friends and neighbors are hoping to help the homeless population in uptown Charlotte, one breakfast burrito at a time. The “Burrito Bikers” started in the fall of 2007 and each Sunday morning, they jump on their bikes and head uptown to deliver a hot breakfast and a cold drink to those less fortunate.
"There's just nothing more to it than that; anybody can do it,” said Kate Payerle, who has been biking with the group for about three years.
Every Sunday for nearly five years, they cycle several miles to give this warm meal and a cold drink to men and women in need. They say it's a fulfilling experience that keeps them grounded.
"It's easy to complain about things, and you realize how much you have and you really shouldn't complain because these guys are in a lot tougher spot and they're so happy over and appreciative over a simple burrito and a drink,” said Tommy Holderness, who started the project in the fall of 2007.
Each week, they're greeted by a crowd as they turn onto Tryon Street. They say they've learned a lot through this experience, including breaking down the stereotypes that are attached to the homeless community.
"The homeless is a huge population so there are some that are alcoholics or drug addicts, but others are hard working people that hit a bad spot,” said Holderness.
People such as Chuvello Holly, who is currently homeless.
"I was just sitting there and they pulled up on bikes. I didn't know what was going on and they came and said, 'We got burritos,'” said Holly.
He's been getting burritos on Sunday for about a year now and says he's still surprised by their selfless act.
"I thought it was a blessing. I thought they were beautiful people for that, because they didn't have to do that, and I was hungry,” said Holly.
Whether on the giving or receiving end, they all want others in the community to realize that everybody can do something to help others.
"So whether you're going to set up a project to help kids who are underprivileged at school or tutor or coach, do something. Everybody ought to be doing something,” said Holderness.
To learn how you can help with the Burrito Biker project, or how you can start your own Burrito Bikers project on a different day, email email@example.com.