On a road trip through rural Mozambique, Lauren Thomas and Rui Mesquita noticed people walking tremendous distances. Those few who had bicycles could get to work, school, health services and clean water in a fraction of the time as those forced to walk.
Rural Mozambicans typically grow crops at their 'Machambas' - small plots of land that they rent, often far from their homes. Supplies are also distant, as are the markets where they will sell their crops. Even water must usually be fetched. This can be an hour's walk each way for a child who then must walk an hour to school.
A treasured bicycle is shared by the whole family, making all of these challenges easier.
But a bike is out of the reach of those whose productivity is severly limited by long time-consuming walks. Rui and Lauren decided to do something about that, and Mozambikes was born.
This is a for-profit bicycle shop and manufacturer, and ALSO a non-profit social develpment charity. The two parts are strictly separated. They employ Mozambicans and participate in a free-market economy - while also enabling those who live on less than two dollars a day, to be healthier, better educated and better equipped to earn a decent income.
All donations Mozambikes recieves through fundraisers like this, go directly to placing bikes where they are most needed.
We are proud to join with them once again in this grand mission. Last time, we raised enough to buy 27 bikes. This time, we are aiming for 30. At least.
We congratulate them for their upgraded bikes and facilities, and hope to fund many more bikes, and help many more families to roll forward into a better life.
Thanks, Dave Morrison