After many months of not being able to travel overseas to visit African partners, as soon as the government gave the green light, Charlotte our African Partner Manager along with Mark our Warehouse Manager visited our partner Kaloko Trust in Zambia.
This is the first time that both had been to Zambia and after a lengthy journey of two flights and a long car journey they finally arrived at their destination accompanied by two members of the Kaloko Trust UK team.
Charlotte and Mark had the opportunity of seeing first-hand the amazing work that Kaloko Trust gets involved in as a result from the sale of the bikes that they receive from Re-Cycle. This includes supporting schools, building latrines, boreholes and their very own bee keeping (the honey was good and tasted delicious).
They also met many people who were using bikes that had been donated by the community here in the UK and then shipped over to Zambia by the charity.
One gentleman, a headteacher from a school 20kms away, uses his bike every day to travel to school. Without his bike he would not be able to get to school early to plan for the school day. His bike was a very sturdy ‘Royal Mail’ bike. These bikes had been donated to Re-Cycle a few years ago from the Royal Mail and quickly proved very popular with our African Partners as they are very sturdy and load bearing.
As well as visiting schools and a macadamia nut farm, they also saw how important it is for Re-Cycle bikes to be able to help with the carrying of water. Pictured is one of the boreholes which was built by Kaloko Trust. This was in very rural community outside of Kapiri Mposhi. This borehole would be accessed by a community within a 20km radius and gives a lifeline to these communities in supplying them with safe, clean water all year round.
The bikes that Re-Cycle donate to our partners help in so many ways, directly and indirectly. Zambia is a vast country, and it takes a long time to get anywhere even if you are travelling by car. In order to survive, you need to travel. Access to a car is a pipedream for many African people so the next option is to walk. This is very tiring and very dangerous especially for children. Owning a bike can make someone’s life so much easier on a day-to-day basis. Bikes are an enabler for many Africans and Re-Cycle plays an integral role in this process.
After spending five long and great days getting to understand and see how important a bicycle can be as a mode of transport, they said their goodbyes.
Field trips are so important to understand the benefits of our bikes in the local communities that we work in. They highlight the overwhelming need for access to sustainable and affordable transport. Owning a bike opens so many doors and opportunities that would not have been possible before for so many families. The bicycle provides a lifeline to a better, safer life.