Our Goal | Challenge:
Life is difficult for a child in Africa, especially Sub-Saharan Africa. The early life of a child faces multiple health issues from trying to survive malaria to having a balanced diet. Families are large and children are often sent to live with relatives. Children have to work hard, often having to farm before and after school, sell at the market or manually work in the home to help make ends meet for the family. Education suffers especially for children from rural areas whose families depend on farming for a living.
Many children have to walk a long distance to school, some over 5 km, often without adequate food or water. A typical journey could take at least 90 minutes with children arriving late and tired for school. Having to walk such long distances in hot sunshine to school and face the return journey at 2 pm in the afternoon when the sun is at its hottest is not conducive to students regularly attending school.
Having a bike to cycle to school makes a huge difference for a student. Students tend to be more attentive at school having not had to walk a long distance. Students look after the bikes and they tend to last them for many years. In Africa the advantage of bike ownership in a family can enhance life immeasurably and can significantly improve their lives through access to education, work, and essential services.
Having a bike is a huge status symbol for a student and they are so proud of the bikes they receive.
The Rotary Club of Weston has teamed up with the Rotary Club of Fort Lauderdale Cypress Creek to collectively send over 400 bicycles to a local South African Rotary Club for distribution to rural African communities desperately in need. The two South Florida, District 6990 Rotary clubs have been working together since 2017. Annually the clubs collect 400 bicycles which have been sent for a total of over 1,200 bikes sent to South Africa. The Rotary Club of Weston supports the collection of bikes from the local community by promoting the cause at area schools and promoting through the Broward Sheriff’s Office and at its annual rotary run Members of both clubs join to disassemble the bikes and pack the shipping container The Rotary Club of Empangeni, Rotary District 9370 for the past few years and once they receive the container, and turn it into a mini bike shop They are then distributed to rural communities that do not have public transportation. Bicycles are life changing
“Old bikes give new lives to families in Africa.”