In 2015, City of Jo’burg identified Orlando as an area in which to distribute bicycles after having constructed dedicated cycle lanes in the area, sponsored by the German KfW Development Bank. The school in Orlando – Noordgesig Secondary School – was selected by the regional councillors of the City of Joburg as part of the city’s plans to create a cycling-friendly city and to reduce traffic congestion in the city. The city has already distributed some 330 bicycles into the area through matching funds provided by private sector sponsors. Dimension Data, in partnership with the City of Jo’burg and Qhubeka, has already sponsored 344 bicycles to learners at three high schools in Orlando, Soweto.
Grant Bodley, CEO Dimension Data Middle East and Africa said, “At Dimension Data, we are passionate about education and the power it has to change lives and transform society. Through this partnership with Qhubeka, we can ensure that more children remain in school and are able to realise their ambitions.”
The Urban Scholar Bicycle Programme has been developed through collaboration by the City of Jo’burg, the Department of Transport, school principals and school governing bodies, South African Police, Community Police Forum and Qhubeka. Learners considered for the programme are required to meet certain qualifying criteria to be able to receive a Qhubeka Buffalo Bicycle. Recipients are chosen according to their need and are required to make a small financial contribution towards bicycle maintenance, provided by Qhubeka-trained and certified bicycle field mechanics.
“Qhubeka is an Nguni words that means “to progress”, and we really believe that these bicycles will help their new owners to progress at school and in life,” says Qhubeka Executive Director Sarah Phaweni. “We are thankful to City of Jo’burg and Dimension Data for partnering with us to help change these schoolchildren’s lives for the better with bicycles.”
Dimension Data is the title sponsor of Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka, Africa’s first World Tour cycling team, and is thus supporting the team’s #BicyclesChangeLives campaign, which aims to raise funds for 5 000 bicycles for Qhubeka and World Bicycle Relief programme recipients during 2016. The 2015 #BicyclesChangeLives campaign funded 5 020 bicycles, which were distributed to schoolchildren in Africa. This year, the 5 000 bicycle target is aimed at providing bicycles to adults as well as schoolchildren across Africa to improve people’s mobility and thereby their access to education, healthcare and economic opportunity.
Qhubeka is World Bicycle Relief’s programme in South Africa. World Bicycle Relief is a global non-profit organisation dedicated to advancing education, health and economic opportunities by providing simple, sustainable transportation. Since Qhubeka’s founding in 2005, it has delivered more than 60 000 specially designed, locally assembled bicycles to people across South Africa.