Dakota Boys and Girls Ranch engages at-risk youth by teaching them how to care for and safely ride minibikes. GEAR is all about connecting kids to something positive, increasing their opportunities to be successful, and teaching them responsibility.
I was always scared of being on two wheels. But after going through the training, I learned to love the minibikes. You learn what works and what doesn’t. Everyone makes mistakes, but if you can get up and do it again, you have a better chance of succeeding.
I loved the dirt biking. It's called NYPUM, National Youth Project Using Minibikes. It’s a therapeutic program that allows you to learn the mechanical side and riding. I was certified by NYPUM to teach some of the younger kids. My favorite memory was teaching them, riding with them and knowing I helped them learn.
Residents between the ages of 10 and 17, on our Minot and Bismarck campuses, can participate in this program. After completing several hours of training on operating minibikes, residents go trail riding. Learning to ride minibikes gives children the opportunity to interact with their peers and leaders in a positive way, helping to build their confidence and self-esteem.