California-based Worldbike’s bicycles are designed to handle large loads, rough terrain and inclement weather. They’re configured to be not only affordable, but also maintained and repaired locally. Through partnerships with international and local agencies, private companies, foundations and NGOs, Worldbike even helps arrange microcredit financing for bike purchases and supplement sales with support from funders and private donors. Its bikes have already been brought to Cuba, Mexico, Rwanda, Senegal and Thailand, among other areas. However, as the company also notes, “the same cargo bike we deliver to rural Africa also turns heads on the streets of Seattle.” An official US version of the bike is now being configured, and proceeds from all purchases will help support bike distribution efforts in Kenya.
A similar initiative has been up and running here in Toronto. Bikes Without Borders, who continues to work to support their Pedal-Powered Hope program:
Bikes Without Borders is working with a Malawian-based NGO (YONECO) to establish a program that will provide Community Health Workers in 7 districts with 400 new bikes and 100 bicycle ambulances. Providing a bicycle or bicycle ambulance to a CHW allows them to reach up to 5 times as many patients, reach remote communities with patient support and HIV/AIDS prevention education, and do their work more efficiently and with greater impact. 400 bikes and 100 bicycle ambulances will allow our network of CHWs in Malawi to reach an estimated 15,000 additional people with lifesaving medication, prevention education and additional support services.
Just $150 purchases a reliable, durable bike for a Community Healthcare Worker in Malawi. $400 is enough to purchase a bicycle ambulance. Visit our donations page to make your investment in the future of African healthcare!
Image via World Bike