Have you ever had to walk 9 miles one way on a daily basis to reach a destination? What if that destination was your school and the 18 mile round trip took you nearly 5 hours every day, would that impair your ability to learn? That’s the situation that many students at the secondary school in Binkolo Village are facing. The school district covers a larger area than most schools in Sierra Leone and thus many of the children have long walks to reach the classroom. Biking is much faster than walking and more energy efficient. Press play above to watch the video we took this April when we visited Binkolo village and asked students and educators to share why VBP bikes are so important to them (Watch it above or on YouTube at Bicycles 4 Binkolo
At Village Bicycle Project, we recognize the incredible value of the bicycle for communities in Africa. We’ve been helping villagers in Ghana and Sierra Leone use bicycles and bike mechanic training to create sustainable economic growth for nearly two decades. Students use bikes to get to school, and their parents use bikes to get to work, to transport goods like food and water, and to access health care. Whole communities benefit from access to bicycle transportation. We need your help to expand our programs in Binkolo and villages like it. #Bicycles4Binkolo Why we do it:
People riding bikes can carry 4 times the weight and arrive 4 times faster than when walking, reducing barriers to work and education. Bicycles help farmers increase their harvest and income, help marginalized women access water and health care, and allow children to attend school more often.
That’s why we’ve been providing bicycles and maintenance education to rural villages throughout Africa since 1999. Bicycles are collected in the U.S. and shipped in containers to our staff in Ghana and Sierra Leone who distribute the bikes and provide hands-on maintenance training for new owners. This holistic approach has allowed us to provide over 106,000 bikes and 60,000 tools to 14 African countries, leading to 3,500 students learning how to ride a bike and 18,000 participants in our maintenance classes.How you can help:
Village Bicycle Project needs your help to send our next shipment of bikes to 500 new participants in Sierra Leone. The primary recipients of the next container will be Magdalene’s classmates who have seen how much her new bicycle has impacted her ability to travel and learn and would like the same opportunity for themselves.
Without these bicycles, hundreds of villagers will be left to face the devastating burden that comes from lack of access to affordable transportation. Our work focuses not simply on providing bikes, but on increasing access and building capacity, self-sustainability and empowerment with training programs. Recipients use these bicycles as a way to lift themselves out of poverty.
We streamline our process to ensure that the donations we receive from people like you go directly to our programs, and we run a very efficient program. However, over the past year, the cost we incur from shipping these much-needed bikes has significantly increased. We need your help to send our next shipment! We are asking you to join our Bicycles 4 Binkolo
campaign with a gift of $25, $50, $100 or more to directly impact the lives of these 500 men, women and children. You can improve their access to education, health, mobility and income through a tool as simple, and as powerful, as a bicycle.