Qhubeka has been featured in the Mail & Guardian. Here’s an excerpt from the article by Thalia Holmes:
Wheel deals are breaking the cycle
About 20km south of Johannesburg, on the edge of a dusty red football field in Somalia Park lives a soft-spoken man in his 30s named Moses Dlamini.
His shack has no elctricity or running water. It stands to the left of a small yard covered in a canopy of green groundsheets held up by broad sticks. In the yard, 6 400 two-litre soft drink bottles are arranged in tightly-packed rows. But the Pepsi, Coke Light and Ginger Beer bottles no longer carry carbonated drinks. Each one has now been carefully filled with soil and houses a tree.
Dlamini was one of a sombre group of about 60 people awaiting the arrival of delegates from nonprofit organisation Qhubeka and its partner, Wildlands Conservation Trust, last Thursday. Barring a few young adults and one teenager, most of the crowd consisted of mothers herding youngsters, elderly men with rounded backs and aged women steeped with years of manual labour.
A few hundred metres away stood the bikes they were there to collect. They huddled like a small cornfield of black and yellow, cordoned off with tape and flanked by huge MTN banners that flapped in the wind. One hundred and twenty Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycles were to be distributed that day – “distributed” rather than “given out”, because the recipients had worked hard to earn them. That, said the nonprofit organisation’s founder Anthony Fitzhenry, was one of the programme’s defining traits. “It’s a hand-up, not a hand-out,” he said…