Bikes for the World

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Women are the Hub of the Community

Bikes for the World partner Village Bicycle Project joined forces with Re~Cycle and The Bicycle Factory to celebrate International Women's Day in a unique and yet ordinary way. Put simply, they do what they do best, delivered bikes to remote villages in Ghana. This latest shipment helped empower many new female bike owners.

Village Bicycle Project (VBP) has been focused on getting bikes into the hands of women and young girls for several years now. To quote VBP, "the truth is, women run Ghana; they run the home, the compound, the neighborhood, the community, and so on..."

Many of our partners overseas have recognized the power of women within a family and community. Whether they are running errands, increasing product to market, or serving as the family school bus, women are using the bicycle to change their world for the better.

VBP kicked off February with a special delivery of bikes to the Suhum-Kraboa-Coaltar District. Actually, this was a shipment of brand new bikes to the students of Otwebediadua School through Cadbury's Bicycle Factory project. VBP taught these students how to ride and care for their new bikes.

In all 20  new bikes were delivered to the school. VBP introduced bikes to 15 students, 11 of them had never been on a bike before. VBP trainers, through their Learn2Ride program, taught these students basic riding skills as well as showing them how to care for their new bikes.

Asamoah Dorcas
In Ghana, women such as Asamoah Dorcas, may use a bicycle to help transport goods to market. Asamoah had been head loading heavy loads, which can cause spine damage. The bicycle will allow her to carry even heavier loads safely and in less time.

Evelyn Amoah is from Offuman in the Brong-Ahafo Region of Ghana. She owns a shop as well as helping on the family farm. The bike she received through the Re~Cycle/VPB effort will help transport crops from the farm to the town market, 5km away. "I will use my bike to take crops to the market," says Evelyn. Her daughters will also use the bike to get to school.

A bicycle donated overseas is often shared between family members and sometimes throughout a village. Because many women in these communities do not know how to ride a bicycle, the Learn2Ride program initiated by VPB is critical to empowering these women to better serve their families and create a better way of life.

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