What I’m trying to build and share is a message of you deserve to go and ride a bike.
You deserve to have time for self care and time with other women, to get together in a group with the same cultural background. We can feel like we belong
With her feet on the pedals and her eyes on the community, Olivia Barraza, Founder and Director of Arkansas Latinas En Bici, is starting something special in Northwest Arkansas.
Olivia along with her sister launched Arkansas Latinas En Bici in 2019, as a way to motivate women in the Hispanic community to ride their bikes. “We encourage one another, support each other…We are a sisterhood. Cycling has you know, no exclusivity, we all deserve to ride a bike”, Barraza said.
Originally from Durango, Mexico, Olivia has called Northwest Arkansas home for more than 30 years and says her cycling journey began as a way to heal.
I really was looking for a way to better my life, physical, mental and emotional because I was going through depression
Through the organization, Olivia is empowering and motivating women to get active. She says, “members are reminded of the importance of exercise not only to improve their physical health but also to better emotional and mental health .”
Fellow rider Veronica Garcia joined the group as a busy mom and says she loves it. “I feel like we are like a family…they make me feel comfortable with what we are doing” said Garcia.
Arkansas Latinas En Bici is on a mission to ensure there is representation for Latinas in the cycling community and all skill levels are welcome. From the Square 2 Square biking event to the upcoming Dia de los Muertos ride on November 7, Olivia is committed to empowering women one ride at a time.
The community is coming together to support Arkansas Latinas En Bici, click here to donate to BikeNWA’s fundraiser. Other organizations including BIke.POC, Beer & Hymns and businesses Hillfolk, Chamois Buttr and Kuat Racks are also raising funds.
Follow Arkansas Latinas En Bici on social media to learn more about ways to get involved.