Rolling Out Health Care in Madagascar

bike beneficiary

Madagascar, the fourth largest island in the world, is also one of the world's poorest countries. 80% of the population lives in rural areas with difficult access to most services. In Madagascar, as in many other countries, the remote communities living in poverty are the most vulnerable segment of society. The availability of health services is extremely limited, leading to high rates of infant, child, and maternal mortality. In addition, 65% of the population does not have access to safe drinking water and sanitation.

The USAID-funded Madagascar Community-Based Integrated Health Project, known locally as MAHEFA, is focused on providing basic, quality health care to isolated populations in six north and northwestern regions of Madagascar (DIANA, SAVA, Sofia, Menabe, Boeny and Melaky).

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Gold Volunteers

Ledecky volunteerKatie Ledecky, US five time Olympic Gold Medal winner, is a proud BfW alum having volunteered for two years through the Social Impact program at Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart. Katie helped load and prep many bikes over her two year tenure while running off to the pool to train and break world records.

When asked what it was like to work with Katie (now that everyone seems to know who she is) we simply agreed she is Impelled To Act. Katie, as well as every Stone Ridge girl who has come through our warehouse before and after is a stand out role model, especially to our younger volunteers who look up to these women. Twice a month they roll up their sleeves and smear grease across their painted fingernails...proving they are just as strong and smart as any boy without giving up an ounce of 'girl'.

Read more about this program and how Katie Ledecky left her mark on Bikes for the World.

August '16 Newsletter

August 2016Group rides build confidence. And confidence makes better riders. This month we take a look at how our partners overseas are dealing with some of the issues they have keeping their riders safe. Find out how Kenya, Costa Rica, and El Salvador are using community rides to bring confidence to their streets.

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View past newsletters here.

Safety, Training, and Advocacy

Fatima HS delivers bikes AND helmets to studentsCycling safety is a big concern for anyone who has ever been on a bike. It goes without saying that includes most of our supporters at Bikes for the World. Many photos we share from our partners overseas show bike beneficiaries with huge smiles on their faces, but few helmets on their heads.

Bikes for the World does accept helmet donations and one program that donates bikes to students in the Philippines purchases brand new helmets and requires all their riders wear them. While several of our partners do request helmet donations, they can't force riders to use them.

We decided to take a look at several of our projects we support around the world to see what challenges they face regarding safety and what measures they are taking to overcome them.

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July '16 Newsletter

July 2016An upate from a student in the Philippines named Rodelyn. Find out how students from her elementary school learned to ride bikes through our partner Bikes for the Philippines in this month's newsletter.

To receive our newsletter by email, sign up now. Please check the volunteer box if you'd like to receive an email when volunteer opportunities are available. You can also view our current opportunities online.

View past newsletters here.

We're Hiring

hiring graphicLove bikes? Want to work for a great nonprofit in the DC Metro Region? We're hiring, check out these positions:

Operations Assistant

will report to the Operations Manager, and will assist the Operations Manager in the maintenance of Bikes for the World's warehouse and in the loading and shipment of donations of bicycles and parts destined for overseas destinations. More...

Program Officer

will be responsible for interactions with overseas partners. More...

June '16 Newsletter

June 2016Another HUGE weekend that involves too many bikes, two loadings, and a call to 911. Check out the fun read this month that includes a peek into our partner program in Barbados.

To receive our newsletter by email, sign up now. Please check the volunteer box if you'd like to receive an email when volunteer opportunities are available. You can also view our current opportunities online.

View past newsletters here.

In Barbados Bikes Uplift A Community

PCW musicSupporting diverse programs is one of the ways Bikes for the World is able to affect so many lives around the world in a multitude of ways. Our bike project provides affordable transportation, creates jobs, encourages education, and supports adult and youth programs beyond just bikes.

When selecting partners we look at many organizations in many countries doing great work in hundreds of areas. In Barbados we found a partner that is helping to change its community through art based projects. Nearly forty years ago this organization formed, focused almost soley on theatre projects. Today it has evolved to form the backbone of a struggling community.

Pinelands Creative Workshop (PCW) is one of the original Bikes for the World partners. We started shipping to this organization in May of 2005 when we first formed as BfW. Since then we have donated over 11,000 bikes to help support the efforts of this community focused group. This month we will load our 24th container of bikes for Barbados.

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Growth and Expansion

Cumberland Rotary Club and Western MD WheelmenOne weekend, seven collections, 705 bikes! It seems like only last week we were bragging about our biggest collection weekend of the year (it was April 30th to be exact)...but we just knocked that weekend out of that top spot with three very strong collections stretching from western Maryland to Baltimore to Apex, North Carolina.

This year the Cumberland Rotary Club and the Western Maryland Wheelmen braved the rain and braced for a lower turn out at their annual bike collection with BfW. No such thing. They exceeded expectations and collected well over 100 bikes, almost overfilling our rented Penske truck again (they did it once before a couple years ago). Veteran driver Phil Ruth, overcame his own obstacles to help fit all those bikes in the truck before returing to our Arlington VA warehouse. Bungees save the day! Read more about that record weekend...

Also the weekend of May 21st, BfW welcomed new collection partner The Peak United Methodist Church in North Carolina. This collection (also over 100 bikes) really helped ramp up our collection efforts in the Carolinas where we hope to ship a container by the end of the year. Find out more about that Carolina effort on our blog.

The Park Catalog Donates Bike Rack

Wesley FreedomMany thanks to the folks at the Park and Facilities Catalog for the company's donation of a Wave commercial bike rack to Bikes for the World, for use by our Baltimore area coordinator, Jim Mitchell, at long-time collection partner Wesley Freedom United Methodist Church, in Eldersburg MD. A bike parking rack at the church will encourage members of the community to access church services and church-hosted community events by bike. Wesley Freedom UMC has carried out an annual collection solo or by itself going back more than 15 years.

The Park and Facilities Catalog recently published an excellent article on Bikes for the World. The Park and Facilities Catalog is a leading vendor of commercial bike racks, site furnishings, equipment and supplies for public and private community and individual recreational facilities, both bicycle-related and general purpose. Check out the article, and while you're there, see what the Park and Facilities Catalog has to offer for your school, church or facility!

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