You may have seen photos of children riding Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycles and heard a little about the fact that learners can earn bicycles through our programmes, but we thought we’d tell you a bit more about the Bicycle Education Empowerment Programme (BEEP).
BEEP originally began in Zambia, in 2009, when World Bicycle Relief engaged with the Zambian Ministry of Education to discuss the challenge of distance travelled by school-going children in the rural areas. It was found that many students had to walk 10 to 15km on a daily basis to reach their schools. Furthermore, the majority of school-aged girls had the extra burden of completing the household chores before leaving for school. This resulted in increased tardiness, absenteeism, exhaustion and often the complete withdrawal of the child from the educational system. Girls are especially vulnerable. Many schoolchildren in South Africa face these same challenges.
Research shows that education is an essential element in fighting disease and poverty in developing countries. While the scope of this problem is broad, one way to immediately increase school attendance and children’s wellbeing is safe, reliable and affordable transportation… enter bicycles.
As World Bicycle Relief’s programme in South Africa, Qhubeka distributes bicycles to students, teachers and school volunteers to improve access to education, reduce travel time and improve educational outcomes. Students earn bicycles through study-to-own contracts. In the short term, bicycles reduce children’s exhaustion from walking to school and help them attend regularly. In the long term, bicycles will help children complete their education, preparing them for better jobs and reducing likelihood of extreme poverty.
In South Africa, BEEP is implemented through Qhubeka’s field implementation partner, World Vision South Africa. With over 50 years experience in delivering quality child focused, community based, transformational development programmes, World Vision is the largest privately funded international relief, development and advocacy charity in the world.
The cost of one bicycle for this program in South Africa is R2,250.00 and includes: component manufacturing, shipping, duty, tax, assembly, delivery, helmets, field visits, field mechanic training, monitoring and evaluation.
To see how a bicycle can change a child’s life, check out this video about Simphiwe and his bicycle:
If you would like to donate a bicycle to our Bicycle Education Empowerment Programme through our secure donations portal, Given Gain click here.
For more information on BEEP about how you or your corporate can support one of these programmes email: firstname.lastname@example.org