JOPLIN, Mo. — Students at Franklin Technology Center (FTC) in Joplin presented a completed project to the Lafayette House Wednesday evening (11/8).

Several students of the FTC Adult Education Welding Program crafted a metal bike rack for the clients staying at the Lafayette House. The bike rack was then bolted into place Wednesday afternoon.

The students and faculty at FTC decided to partner with the Lafayette House, after learning that the clients did not have a safe area to lock up their bikes. Several of them were being tampered with and even stolen.

Bicycles serve as the only mode of transportation for many of the women at the Lafayette House — which is why their recent partnership with the Franklin Technology Center for the construction of a new bike rack — was so important.

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“This is so much more than just a bike rack. For us, it was an opportunity to build a partnership within our community. It was an opportunity for us to bring awareness to the services that we provide, but also directly meet at need that our clients identified is a barrier for them,” said Lafayette House Development Director, Chelsea Conley.

It took a couple of weeks for the students of FTC’s Adult Education Welding Program to complete the bike rack. Educators at Franklin Tech say they would be happy to partner with the Lafayette House for future projects.