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Bikes to Rwanda’s Mission

March 14, 2011

These pages will be a little schizophrenic over the next couple of weeks as I get both projects—Bikes to Rwanda and Egan’s Wager—up and running. And it would be nice to get a little riding in, too (Spring appears to have sprung). I hope it’s not too discombobulating. Very quickly, this is what got me hooked on Bikes to Rwanda and wanting to team with them:

On their History page, a letter relates the project’s inception. On a 2006 coffee-buying trip, Duane Sorensen of Stumptown Coffee Roasters learned from coffee farmers at the Koakaka Cooperative, near Karaba, Rwanda, that bicycles would be the single most valuable addition to their communities. For transportation and for carrying heavy bags of coffee through rugged landscapes.

From BTR’s Contributions page:

We need your support to make this incredible project happen. Your gift will allow us to purchase a number of essential items to keep our bicycle distribution, workshop construction, and bicycle mechanic training programs rolling. A partial list of those items follows:

$10 buys a pedal wrench, or allen key set for a mechanic
$25 purchases spares tubes and tires for a cargo bike
$40 replaces a damaged wheel
$75 secures new brake calipers, pads, levers, cable and housing for a cargo bike
$100 provides 5 bicycle repair manuals to Rwanda mechanics.
$150 supplies a full tool kit to a bike shop
$200 purchases a cargo bike
$1000 buys 5 cargo bikes
$2500 sends a master level mechanic to Rwanda to train workshop mechanics
$10,000 builds a community bike shop

Put these together, and I liked the idea of a project designed to empower coffee co-ops in Rwanda combined with the fact that my pedaling could very quickly result in a substantial contribution to the larger goal.

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