Bicycles enable rural communities to fetch water, access markets, increase their income and reach health clinics and schools.

What difference does a bicycle make?

With a bicycle a person can…

  • Carry five times as many crops
  • Go four times the distance to reach better markets and opportunities
  • Triple market attendance
  • Increase income by 35%

Increasing impact
Bicycles are provided on a lease-to-own basis so that as loans are paid off Amigos purchases more bicycles as part of a revolving fund so that many more communities can benefit. This fits with the Amigos’ model of a hand-up rather than a hand-out.

Long-term sustainability
To ensure the sustainability of the project we have been working in partnership with the charity Re-Cycle who have constructed a workshop at Kira Farm Development Centre and trained two trainers in bike mechanics. Young people at Kira Farm are now being trained in bike repairs so that the wheels will keep spinning on all the bikes we distribute.

‘Today I can carry four jerry cans of water on the bike, instead of the two I used to carry by hand. My wife and our seven children now have enough to drink, we wash every day and can clean our clothes regularly.’ Walter, Unyama.

How does a bike help?

WATER: Most people make five or more trips a day to fetch water and children frequently miss school to carry out this essential task. With a bicycle a household would only need to make two trips a day.

EDUCATION: Many children don’t attend school because it is too far away. A bike is a quick and easy solution to this problem.

INCOME: Most of the farmers we work with sell their crops at a low price to middle-men because the nearest market is 10km or more way. Farmers could double their profits if they had a bicycle to transport their maize and sell directly at market.

TIME: With the time saved fetching firewood and water on a bicycle, women would be able to set up small businesses to bring money into the family.

HEALTH: Often the nearest health centre is too far away, making it inaccessible for many who have to get there on foot whilst unwell.