August '17 Newsletter

2017 AugustMiBici operates under FINCA Costa Rica and serves as a micro-finance program for rural villages in Costa Rica. Under this program our bikes are actually changing lives outside of just transportation. Find out how bikes help farmers, convenience store owners, and sheep breeders like Maria.

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July '17 Newsletter

2017 JulyVillage Bicycle Project has been a BfW partner since our beginning in 2005. Since that time the program has expanded to include Ghana and Sierra Leone with a huge focus on empowering women with bicycles.  We took a deeper look into this program this month.

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June '17 Newsletter

2017 JuneOutreach Coordinator Yvette Hess took a vacation to Barbados earlier this year and she dropped in on our project there which highlights the arts. She brings us a full report of what they are up to and why this program is so important. Read on.

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Tom Ford- Goodwill Panama

Remembering Tom Ford

Tom FordThe Bikes for the World community is deeply saddened to learn of the death of Tom Ford, chairman of the board of our long-time partner, the Panamanian Association of Goodwill Industries (Goodwill Panama).

On behalf of the Bikes for the World community, I have communicated my deepest condolences to Tom's widow Julee, as well as to Goodwill Panama executive director Sheila Sanchez and board chair Ariel San Martin.

Tom, an engineer by training, was a long-time resident of Panama. In the 1970's, he joined with local businesspeople to found Goodwill Panama to provide educational alternatives and employable skills for troubled and disadvantaged youth. He served for many years on the board of directors of the U.S.-based Goodwill International. He was a long-time Rotarian, the founder of a scholarship fund to further the education and employment of the blind, and in his professional and personal life, an exemplar of integrity and commitment to helping others.

Tom Ford with beneficiariesGoodwill Panama incorporated bicycles into its program beginning in 2000, and in 2005 approached the newly-formed Bikes for the World to continue and expand the program. Since that time, Bikes for the World has donated 22,261 bicycles, and some 100 portable sewing machines, making Goodwill Panama our second-largest recipient.

Through this long collaboration, Tom became a personal friend, and I and many others will greatly miss him.

-Keith Oberg

Director Bikes for the World

May '17 Newsletter

2017 MayWow! When we partnered up with the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek we had no idea what we were in for! This crew collected so many bikes in 2017 that we had to schedule a loading right there at the collection site. Check it out.

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We've MOVED!

ware174Bikes for the World has a new home! After years of jumping from place to place just barely escaping the wrecking ball that seemed to haunt our every move...BfW now has a semi-permanent address to call our own.

It's been a somewhat 'gypsy' existence taking advantage of donated or concessional space over the past decade or more, but the time has come to set down a few roots. Either that or there were no more abandoned buildings (or prisons) to take over.

So now, we are back in Montgomery County after a few years hiatus, this time with a five year paid lease. Read: We're sticking around for a while!

Read more:

April '17 Newsletter

2017 aprilWe are excited to see our latest container arriving in Sierra Leone, but the big news this month is about our recent move! That's right, Bikes for the World is back in Montgomery County. Check out where we are now.

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March '17 Newsletter

2017 marchBig news out of South Carolina this month. BfW Charleston Chapter loads their first container now on the way to Costa Rica. And a huge spring line up has them thinking about a second loading already...

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Creating Autonomy

Ghana containerCreating jobs can be just as important as providing affordable transportation to jobs. At Bikes for the World we are focused on not just delivering used bikes to developing countries, but helping build stronger communities through access to healthcare, education, and jobs. Sometimes those jobs are created through the donations we deliver.

Our bikes generate several jobs depending on our receiving partner. From mechanics, to sales, to the organizational positions themselves, our flood of 500 bikes creates a flurry of work on the other end of our donations. But that work, again, depending on the the partner, may be 'seasonal' in nature. Once those bikes are repaired and sold or donated our partners' workshops may sit dark until the next shipment.

On the other hand, some programs use bike sale funds to support year long activities that benefit the community such as health initiatives, after school programs for at-risk youth, and micro-credit opportunities.

Read more:

February '17 Newsletter

2017 FebruaryWe take a look at how our program is helping refugees better adapt to living and working in the United States. We also revisit a program overseas trying to keep students in the community by offering them job skills. Check out how your old bikes are helping to change the world for the better.

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