Andy and Liz live in Kensington, Johannesburg, and have recently renovated a house with the help of their gardener, Robert, who is also a versatile handyman.
Andy runs an event organising company, while Liz is a medical doctor who works with the Lions rugby team. Andy cycles and runs, has completed the Freedom Challenge (a 2,400km MTB route across southern Africa) and is currently busy organising the Trans Afrika Bike Race from Beit Bridge to Cape Town. He first heard about Qhubeka through its association with Team MTN-Qhubeka p/b Samsung.
“I did not originally know you could buy Qhubeka bikes, but being involved with the Freedom Challenge Scholarship Fund (initiated by the Freedom Challenge riders to address poverty in communities along the bike route), we started to investigate bikes for scholars and that’s how I found out more about Qhubeka,” he explains.
Andy hired Robert four months ago as a gardener. “Robert has worked in South Africa for the past eight years and been passed from pillar to post, as most immigrants are, ” he says. “They are not normally considered for permanent positions and are paid badly. We renovated a house and we needed to do it in six weeks. Robert, it turns out, is not just a gardener but a brick layer, tiler, painter and all-round handyman. He worked like a demon, never compromising on quality, and he organised the team working for us. He proved to be honest, diligent and generally a nice guy. When the renovation was finished, we wanted to give him something other than money, something that would make a difference to him. We had found out about the Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycles and decided to get him some wheels. When we gave him the bike, the delight was written all over Robert’s face. He could not hide his pleasure. He says the bike has given him freedom. Now he travels all over Kensington, going to different properties, saving money on taxis and saving time by not having to walk. He rides it everywhere.”
Andy chose the Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycle because he didn’t want to waste money on a flimsy bicycle from a general retail outlet, which might be cheaper, but would not last as well, or on an overly complex bicycle. “The Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycle came with a package including a helmet, lock, tool and pump,” he says. “It’s robust, one-geared and it just works – ideal for Africa. It saves Robert taxi fares, saves him time, helps him carry loads, and makes him look like king of the hill! We will be buying more bikes for our staff. It’s a great bike and Qhubeka is a great cause to support.”
Here is Robert with his new bicycle: