Every single thing we ship overseas gets reused. It may be the bike, the OSB board we stack the bikes on, the rubber tubes and tires we use to level the rows, or YES, even the container itself.
BEN empowers local entrepreneurs with shipments of used bicycles and parts from organizations such as Bikes for the World and Working Bikes for example.
BEN not only supplies remote areas of Africa with bikes but also trains new bike mechanics, and offer business and computer classes to ensure new bike businesses flourish even in those remote areas of Africa.
Through a partnership with a volunteer network, Bicycles for Humanity, BEN Namibia developed a new bicycle distribution model, the Bicycle Empowerment Centre (BEC). A BEC is a shipping container loaded with around 300 bicycles, spare parts and tools. BECs are delivered to the community based organisations that BEN Namibia works with and are run as bicycle workshops.
Each BEC uses its income from initial bicycle sales and servicing to ensure that it will be able to operate in the future, paying mechanics' wages, buying new spare parts, and covering the costs of resupply of bicycles. A portion of the bicycles are given to outreach volunteers or other beneficiaries like children walking to school, while a share of profits are used to fund community social initiatives.
And the money raised through these bike shops isn't just a For Profit effort. Much of the proceeds go back into the shop to buy parts and bikes, but they also fund new entrepreneurial projects such as a concrete business that was started from BEC funds.
Cycle 4 Life BEC in Mariental brings money in to feed children in the local Catholic AIDS Action orphan support programme.
As you can see a donated bike from a Northern Virginia garage can change more than just one life overseas. When we say your donations are changing entire communities, we mean it!