Bikes for the World

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

One Bike Benefits More Than One Person

Youth mechanics in the 2014 program
Bikes for the World has about a dozen active partners around the world who receive our donated bikes regularly. Each one of these programs is unique in how they are using our donated bikes to positively impact their surrounding communities.

In Panama we partner with La Asociación Panameña de Industrias de Buena Voluntad (Goodwill Panama). Goodwill Panama operates a storefront that not only employs the skills taught at Goodwill Panama, but also generates revenue to help pay for those training programs, such as business training and bike mechanics.

Ruben runs metal program
Bikes donated to Goodwill Panama from Bikes for the World are refurbished in the metals program and then sold in the storefront  to help support the project. Individuals with disabilities or from disadvantaged backgrounds take part in the programs to learn workforce skills that will help them earn more and provide better lives for their families.

Ruben currently oversees the metal program at Goodwill Panama. He trains all the apprentices and overseas their work in the program.The program begins with  bicycle repair, with participants learning the basics of bike mechanics and moving through more difficult repairs. The final stage of the program is welding, which is what most apprentices end up doing for work once they complete the program.

Elisondro Tuñón

Elisondro Tuñón purchased one the bikes donated by Bikes for the World and reconditioned by Goodwill Panama.

Elisondro is a bricklayer and uses his bike to get to work much faster than he did before. To get to some of his construction jobs Elisondro traveled on foot sometimes as far as two hours away.

Now with his bike, he is able to make that commute in a quarter of the time. This allows Elisondro to take jobs that are even further from his home without sacrificing time with his family.

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