Meet The Recipients of Bikes in Tanzania

Meet The Recipients of Bikes in Tanzania

We recently delivered a number of bikes, in person, to people living in Tanzania. The delivery was part of our ongoing Wheels 4 Villages project.

The culture here is such that many people within the community are more than happy to share their bikes. This is wonderful to see; when a person is given a bike they automatically treat it as something that others within their circle of immediate neighbors will be able to utilize also.

Health or lack there of is major problem in the area; there are many widows. This is partly due to the lack of a good health service and health education is generally not available. We hope that the bikes given to the medical community will help them spread the word about how to stay safe and healthy.

Another ‘problem’ is that the Moslem faith allows multiple wives. When a man’s first wife gets old, the man often marries a second time to a much younger woman. They then have children with the younger wife and when the men die they leave behind wives and young children for whom life is very tough.

The family network is very tight, the parents keep their children close by, they are all very close. Sadly though, once the girls grow up and marry, it is unlikely that they will ever see their families again since they are supposed to treat their husband’s family as their only family.

Here are some stories from the people we met and donated bikes to.

Ugweno Mountain Region

Yosif Daudi

Yosif is Moslem and has 2 wives and 4 children. They live on the side of the mountain overlooking the Nytostar Cent. He and other community members are working together to build a narrow road from this side of the mountain down to Kivisini. They are paid $1 per meter of road construction and they do this in extreme heat.

Hoseni Mrutu

A family with 3 children, they also live in the settlement that overlooks Ugweno Valley from the mountain. They farm goats and chickens and are relatively rich due to natural resources — they have a stream running through their property. They work very hard, having to travel for 3 hours to get to the market. Very friendly people, they gave us a tour of their home, which had newspaper for wallpaper, it was dark and infested with flies, but they were all very happy.

Elizabeth Jastime

Elizabeth is a school girl studying at the Ugweno Secondary School, she is an orphan and was taken in by Pastor Baraka and his family. She will use the bike to get to school for now and once her education in the mountains is finished she will use it for getting to either further education or to her job. She is the girl in traditional dress holding a ‘thank you Trent College’ in the picture.

Amenieli Fredric Karibueli

He will use the bike to get to the market and back with his goods from the mountain. He travels everyday from the mountain to Kivisini and he would use the bike to transport his water containers to his farming land.

Isak Msahgi

This man was homeless and an alcoholic before Pastor Baraka and his family took him in and rehabilitated him. They also lent him money to start a business and a new life. He now lives a life of sobriety and he works as a cow farmer, he slaughters his own beasts and will use the bicycle to take his meat to the market and local shops, so it will be fresher for the customers.

Ugweno Valley Region

Nyto Star Community Bikes

These bicycles will be held at the Community Centre and will be there for the use of the villagers. The system has been set up so that any person can use a bike, they just sign it out and then sign it back in again in when they’re done. If we see a pattern that a certain person is regularly borrowing a bike, we will consider them for a personal bike on our next visit.

The borrower will be responsible for the bike whilst they have it. We have hired a bike mechanic to look after these bikes. He has been provided with tools and spare parts, and there is a money float to purchase items needed, if and when they are needed. Villagers can come to Amenieli for him to work on the bikes and he will also tour the villages one day a week with his toolkit to do “on site” repairs. We have paid Aminieli $200 in advance wages; he will be paid $20 per month for now. As we expand our work here, it may be necessary to hire him to work more hours and perhaps, in addition, oversee other bike mechanics.

Rhoda Mwaijuma

Rhoda Mwaijuma is a charcoal maker; she has a child that goes to the secondary school which means that she has to board. This costs Rhoda, who is a widow, £50 per year, which is a lot of money to her. She will use the bicycle to collect the charcoal and to sell it along different road sides.

Eli Fardhi Kambisimba

Eli is a farmer, he will use his bicycle to get to his land and to transport his produce to the market. The market is an approximately 6 hour journey, the round trip. He can also carry his water containers on the bike to water the crops.

Kivisini Health Centre (Dr. Safina Hussein, Nurse Batulissa)

The health centre has 1 doctor and 2 nurses working there. They have many daily house calls to do that stretch over a vast area. We have given the centre 2 bikes to make this easier for them. They were walking for approximately 2 to 3 hours a day on house calls, carrying an ice box to keep the necessary medicine cool in the terrible heat. With a bike they can make more house visits, and the drugs will be less likely to overheat. They can also spread the word and educate more people about prevention disease. AIDS and Malaria are big killers in this region and by educating the people, lives can be saved.

Fatouma Elija

This is a young woman who is a widow with a teenager at the secondary boarding school. She must also pay £50 per year to educate her child. Fatouma is a brick and charcoal maker. At present she walks a 24km round trip to Kifaro to sell her charcoal. She will use the bike to transport the charcoal, and the bricks she is making to build a new house. The house that she and her children live in at the moment is literally washing away and the thatch is in a terrible state.

Mina Saidki

Another widow with a son at boarding school in Jipe, Mina will use the bike to get to work. I am not sure, but at the time of our visit, she may have been pregnant.

Jonaisia Kanza

Another charcoal maker, Jonaisia is also a widow with a child at boarding school. She can hardly afford the fees, but feels that an education is very important for her son. She will use the bike for work — to transport the charcoal — and her son will help her when he is not at school.

Kivisini Elementary School

We gave a total of 12 bicycles to the Kivisini school. Many of these children travel 2 to 3 hours a day for school and they carry water containers to fill up at the school tap. For the trip home they must lug the very heavy containers home again. The heat is intense and after walking their school route, I can fully appreciate how tough a journey this is for the children.

And their days do not end with school, when they get home they then have to help out on the farms. Their lives are not easy. The bikes will of course make the school trip much quicker and easier for them, they can also carry the water containers on the bike. In fact, the very next day, I photographed a school girl carrying 4 yellow containers on her bike.

Some of the children have siblings at the same school or neighbors at the same school, so this means that they can share a bike. Therefore in most cases, we gave 1 bike to share between 2 or 3 children. They will adapt the bikes with a rack on the back so that more kids can sit on the bike.

We also donated a bike to the school as a whole. This can be used for the teachers to run errands and also as a back up if a child needs to go home to collect forgotten homework, or if they are sick. The children keep the bikes at the medical centre during the day, under a Baobab tree, where they are safe.

Jipe Medical Centre (Nurse Navone C Ibrahim)

This nurse named Navone is the acting Daktari (Daktari is doctor in Swahili) since the qualified doctor is away for 3 years. She speaks some English and she has to travel around a large area to treat her patients. She makes many pre- and post-natal visits and administers vaccinations.

Joise Moses

We filmed Joise in her home whilst the nurse Navone was doing a house call. Joise is disabled, so her family will use the bike to transport her and also for work, to help support Joise since she cannot work.

Sadiki Hasani

Sadiki is 78 years old with a very young son. A farmer and a fisherman, Sadiki will use the bike to get to the lake and to his land. He will also use it to get to the market which is a 2 hour walk from Jipe. His fish will hopefully be much fresher and he will be able to sell more of it by using the bike.

Iddi Faumai

Iddi is a farmer who cannot walk very far anymore, but he is able to ride a bike. He will use the bike to get to his farmland, which is 2 hours away on foot. Also his family will use the bike to go to the market.

Mwanini Saidi

Mwanini is a widow and earns a living selling bananas at the market. She travels for 3 hours to the market with her bananas on her head. The bike will make the journey quicker and of course easier since she no longer needs to carry the bananas herself.

Mustafa Saidi

Mustafa is a fisherman who walks 3 hours to get to the market and 3 hours back again. Many times the fish are spoiled by the time he gets there. He earns $5000 a month and he has a wife and a young child to support on the equivalent of $5.

Region around the road from Mwanga to Kifaru

Salimini Baraka

This is a 15 year old boy at his last year of secondary School. He will use his bike to get to school for now and then he will either use it to get to further education or to his job. Salimini has a 4 hour round trip to school and back each day in heat up to 120f he will be a great example of someone to follow through his next few years and see how a bicycle will affect is life.

Eliukunda Ataulombise

A very proud woman, a widow with a child at elementary school, Eliukunda works extremely hard to grow crops on a difficult plot of land. She will use the bike to get to the market with her crops, 6 hours round trip, and also to go to church. She wants to rebuild her house, so she will use the bike to transport mud bricks and water as well.

Rehema

Another very proud woman who is severely disabled — her feet are twisted and withered and she must be carried everywhere. Her grandson rented bicycles when he needed to take her to the doctors or on errands, or when he had to transport their food and water. We have given her family a bike so that they no longer have to rent them, which they can’t afford to do. She was very happy for me to photograph her, very insistent, she wanted to pose me for, quite a character. She would be a good follow up recipient.

Kifaru Elementary School/Majengu Primary School

These are 2 schools on the same campus; the campus is split down the middle diagonally. The children are from 2 separate areas, but they are the same ages. We have given the bikes to the school and the school will give them to a child to use at their own discretion, i.e. whomever they think will most benefit from its use at any given time. The bikes are for the children, however, if a teacher needs to run errands while the children are in school, they can borrow the bike. The bikes will always stay the property of the school; when a child leaves school the at the end of their education, the bike will remain.

Bike Recipients from Kenya

SET APART KENYA – Bicycles Report.

Helping Children, Youth, Women, Self Help and Community Projects

Dear Hans,

Receive greetings from Kenya. First I would like to apologize for the delay of the report this is because I have been involved in other activities in my place of work.
On behalf of the Set Apart Kenya I will like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank you for the donation of $1000.00 that enabled us to buy 15 bicycles. Wheels4 for Life has indeed made a difference in the lives of the people here in Kenya.

The following is a short report from the distribution of bicycles in a rural village of Nyamusi Division, Nyamira District. I was able to personally deliver the 7 bicycles to the Omokia Self help group which is a local community based organization helping to uplift the lives in the village.

I will send you another report after distributing the next remaining eight bicycles
The following is what the receipts villagers of Omokia Self help group said: –

Nemwel Manyuru – “you have made the life of my wife easier, I will be able to help her carry the her luggage to the market with this bicycle”
Elijah Ondeo – “This is a miracle I have been trying to save to a bicycle but I have not been able to do so; but today my dream has come true. I will use the bicycle to transport goods and I will be able to go to places faster than before. I used to take one hour to go the market but now I will be there in fifteen minutes. Please thank the people who donated this bicycle”
Orego Maseru – “I will use the bicycle to transport bananas and tea leaves to the buying centers. Thank you for remembering us in this remote village of Kiabora”
One widow mother Askah said “the bicycle will be used my children to help me transport my goods to the market. I will be able to carry more goods than before. God bless you for this precious gift”.

Above left Orego Maseru trying the new bicycle with a basket that carries the tea leaves. Right downloading the bicycles while below is the loaded bicycles and off loading of the bicycles from the pick up that transported the bicycles from Nairobi to Nyamira District.

Another report will come after the distribution of the Maragua District.
Thank you for being patient with me. God bless you.

Humbly submitted by
Morris Ndugire
SAK Director.

 

UN Equator Initiative

Wheels 4 Life is working on a partnership with the Equator Initiative, a project of the UNITED NATIONS Development Programme (www.undp.org) and other partners (www.equatorinitiative.org).

The United Nations Development Programme Equator Initiative team will help us identify communities along the equator where bicycles are needed. These communities have been acknowledged by the UNDP Equator Initiative (http://www.undp.org/equatorinitiative/index.htm), a partnership for sustainable communities in the tropics.

More news and developments will be posted soon.

June 8th 2007

Our Equator Initiative program with the United Nations is working out well. We have already authorized the first 20 bicycles in Nigeria and 10 bicycles in Zimbabwe. Other projects are pending for the Philippines, Tanzania and India.

This week the new Equator Prize finalists were announced in Berlin.

Stories From Madagascar

Here are some background stories from the people who received bikes as part of our project in Madagascar

JEAN PHILEMON ZOTONANTENAINA
He is responsible for 5 villages as inspector of proper disposal of butchery entrails of cows.  He will use the bicycle when he makes the purchase of phytosanitaire at Ambositra which is 45 kms.  The  transportation cost from where he lives Ambatomarina to Ambositra is 40.000 fmg.  The bicycle therefore will reduce his transportation cost so he can use it instead to support his family.

JEAN THEODILE RANDRIAMIADANTSOA
He works for rural development in the commune of Andina and takes care of 5 villages.  He will use the bicyle to carry vaccines and insecticides for the farmers and to ferry also vegetables to sell in the market of Ambositra which is 17 kms from Andina.  The transportation cost is 20.000 fmg to Ambositra.

JEAN BAPTISTE RAKOTOZAFY
He is in charge of the rural development of the zone of Imady situated 17 kms from Ambositra.  He will use the bicycle to accompany  or visit the farmers to areas not accessible by car or bus.

PASCAL RASAMIMANANARIVO
He is in class Terminal in Ambositra and take charge of his brothers and sisters who are studying in the city.  He will use the bicycle to carry their food provision for the week.  They live 17 kms away from Ambositra and on foot another 7 kms.

GABRIEL RAZANKOLONA
He is 46 years old and a farmer who lives in Anjamahitsy which is 14 kms away from Mahabo;  He has 7 children and would like to use the bicycle to carry his farm products to the market of Mahabo.  He also works as head catechist for Analamtsivala and usually go on foot to visit the villages  which ranges from 6 kms to 20 kms. away.  The bicycle will facilitate his workload and will also be able to help his family.

TOLDRAZA ANDRE
He lives in Mananjaka and has 3 children.  He earns his living by farming.  During the rainy season he plants rice and during the dry season he collects honey in the forest.  His village is 6 kms away from the nearest market at Mahabo.  He has to take fruits and vegetables to market and carry it on his head to market.  He is also a catechist in charge of his sector and visits the villages during weekends.  These villages are remote and have to walk from 10 to 15 kms.   The bicycle will be a great help to lighten his load and facilitate his evangelisation of the word of God to his neighbors.    He belongs to the province of Morondava, region of Menabe, southwest of Madagascar.

DOLAY MAMPITOETSY
He comes fromAnkilivalo and has two children.  He is working as a part time teacher in a small school in Betsiriry.  This village is 7 kms. away from where he lives and he has to walk everyday to reach it.  He also do some farming and he needs to bring his products to Mahabo to be able to sell at a higher price.  Mahabo is 18 kms. away from Ankilivalo.  When he has to bring papers of the school to Mahabo, he always has to go on foot .   Aside from all these, he also gives his time to the church by being a head catechists of his sector.  The sector covers  6 to 14 kms distance away from where he lives.  The bicycle therefore will play a very important role in the performance of all his designated tasks.

C/O SR. MARIA GAUCI
Sr. Maria Gauci is a nurse and serves the poor of Ankaramena by her mobile clinic as the poor lives in the hinterlands.  When they are sick they try to bring their sick along the road where Sr. Maria’s jeep will pass by as there are no busses that will bring them to Tanenbao where Sr. Maria lives and has a pharmacy and clinic there.   Sr. Maria passes that route 3 times a week.   When the patients are not able to get the necessary medicine, Sr. Maria has to send someone to deliver the medicine and this is all done on foot.   She needed therefore at least two bicycles at her disposal so she could send his boys to deliver the much needed medi cine to the patients.

c/o  Sr. JUDITH PAMINTUAN
Sr; Judith Pamintuan is the superior of the Sisters of St. John the Baptist of Mahajanga.  The sisters there run a Centre for the  poor villagers near the seacoast.  The bicycles will be used by the Sisters to reach distant areas to do community development with the fisherfolks of Mahajanga.

SR. BERNARDINE AND SR. BERNADETTE
Both Sisters are working for rural development of communities engage in rice culture in the town of Sandrandahy.  They used to walk 10 to 12 kms.  to reach far flung villages and conduct meetings on rice culture making follow ups among farmers .  They will now be able to reach these villages in shorter time and will also save their energies for better service to the farmers.

c/o SR. ALICE
Sr. Alice is a student of Social Work doing research work in Sandrandahy.   She  recommended a promising student for a bicycle since he walks 7 kms away from his home. No transport is available and this student is the hope of his family.  He excels in class and if he has a bicycle he will be able to spend more time to prepare his lessons at home or in school.

c/o SR. MADELEINE
Sr; Madeleine recommended a Catechist who covers a lot of villages in Sandrandahy.  This catechist assists a lot the parish priest of Sandrandahy and often sends him on errands to contact important persons in the different villages for the celebration of the liturgy;  The bicycle therefore will facilitate his efficiency in fulfilling all his charge.

PERE ADRIEN RAKOTONDRAMANANA
Pere Adrien is the parish priest of Ambohittimanjaka.   He has to make pastoral visit to 20 districts a month and covering a distance  of 10 to 20 kms away from his parish.  The other 10 district can be reached by taxibrousse.   The bicycle therefore will enable him to reach the villages on  time for the liturgy or the pastoral visit.

Letters From Wheels4Life Bike Recipients in Ghana

Wheels4Life  bicycles to the Neko Tech Centre’s Health Care Project, which will reach out to villages to educate residents on a number of issues, including economics, HIV, Family Planning, Health, environmental & agricultural matters.

Here are letters from some of the healthcare volunteers describing themselves and how a bike will support their work:

Wisdom Tengey
Age: 28
Location: Vui, Ghana

I will use my bike to:

  • Commute in the community for jobs
  • Help me get to church, the market and other places on time
  • Save money on transportation fare
  • Visit my friends and family regularly
  • For bicycle racing, excercise

Forgive Agbokemey
Age: 19
Location: Dzelukope, Ghana

I will use my bike to:

  • Get to school on time
  • To go to the market to buy goods
  • Cycling, competition training activities
  • It will cut down on transportation costs
  • Down trotting or other physical exercise

Elvis Kwana
Age: 22
Location: Kedzi, Ghana

I will use my bike to:

  • Get to school and church
  • Visit my parents
  • Cycling
  • It will save me money for things like pens, pencils, exercise book, etc for school supplies
  • To build my body healthy and strong by riding always
Woodcarver in Madagascar receives bike from W4L

Woodcarver in Madagascar receives bike from W4L

Dear Hans, Peace! The good news is that your Wheels4Life project is very much welcomed by the Malagasy people. To date I have already awarded 14 bicycles to deserving persons and I tried to reach the provinces as well. I gave 10 bicycles to far-flung provinces and 4 to our women here in Antananarivo and 6 more will be given to some far-away place too.

All of them are very grateful to you for sharing your blessings with them. They could hardly believe that they would ever own a bicycle one day and this will help them a great deal. Dear Hans, Peace!

Here is the photo of Charles Razafindrakoto, the sculptor. He lives in the forest of Ambanivato Alarora some 20 kms; away from the city of Tananarive. He is 57 years old and has 4 children. His whole family including his wife are doing woodcarving. When we knew him, he did not have a decent home but now that he brings his products to us he has already built a modest home for his family. He walks 10 kms to reach the road which will take him to the city and he has to carry a heavy load of his wooden products.


With his new bike he could now load it in his bike and bring his goods handily to the city. He is a very simple man who wants to live the Malagache way. He loves to walk barefooted and even if we offered him a pair of shoes he prefers to be barefooted for he wants to be connected with mother earth. He also wears all the time his malagache hat and won’t part with it even inside the building. The facial expression of his woodcraft is so well done and he specializes on angels and virgins and nativity sets. Personally he has a very interesting story.

According to him he used to pasture cows, zebus, here in Madagascar, a family is said to be rich according to the number of cows he own. He did not own any cow for he is a poor man but he loves to take care of cows. So he works for rich families and pastures herds and herds of cows. these herds have to be led to pasture lands and that means he has to lead them further south. He would be walking with them and camping out with them for months and months. If he is able to lead them as far as Tulear and back to Antananarivo he is paid one cow. So he has done this many times so that he was able to have a herd of seven cows at one time. After that he settled and just wanted to take care of his seven cows. But this was shortlived since a group of bandits armed with guns came one night and threatened to shoot him if he did not give them all his cows. So he lost all his cows. He was so frustrated he no longer wanted to do any pasturing and resorted to woodcarving.

He gradually became proficient but he was not paid well for his beautiful work. One day one of our sisters bought his woodcarving and wanted to order more so she was introduced to Charles. Sister was able to interview him and realized that he needed our help. From that time on he started delivering his products to our centre and we manage to sell them at a good price so he could improve his home. He is very grateful and happy about his owning a bicycle and would like to thank you from the bottom of his heart. He indeed deserve all the help that we have been extending him and all the members of his family are grateful.

Shalom, Sr. Jeanette

CENTRE FIHAVANANA
SŒUR DU BON  PASTEUR
MADAGASCAR