People in undeveloped regions of Zambia suffer much hardship due to their lack of access to simple sustainable transportation. The population of Zambia is 15 million and 77% of them live in extreme poverty.
A sustainable means of transportation in the form of a bicycle along with a small business loan and access to financial services, enables the people of Zambia to take advantage of business opportunities, giving them a fighting chance to move out of poverty and empowers them to stay out of poverty.
A bike in the life of a Zambian also means:
- Both men and women are empowered by reducing the social vulnerability and injustices that come from extreme poverty.
- Significant decrease in the time it takes school-age children to get to and from school as well as a safer commute.
- Enhanced small business productivity by carrying more of their product further, and faster to market.
- Opportunities for family members to engage in other activities to improve quality of life such as accessing better health care facilities.
World Vision and its partner microfinance organization, VisionFund International, operate in areas characterized with poor transportation networks. This situation has made the introduction of bicycle loans very popular and more often than not, bicycle loan recipients also want to increase the productive capacity of their business units with necessary tools and services; for example milking cans, hand ploughs, plastic irrigation tubing, water pumps, agricultural inputs, or veterinary services.
To address this need VisionFund Zambia has repackaged its bicycle loans to include a variety of tools and services needed by small scale entrepreneurs. The new bicycle loan packages will ease mobility challenges while enhancing business productivity for micro-entrepreneurs. In addition, a bicycle is seen as an asset in any rural homestead — allowing family members to engage in other activities that improve quality of life such as accessing better health care facilities and dramatically decreasing the time it takes school-age children to walk to and from school.
Bikes and business loans transform lives in Zambia
We are passionate about helping break the cycle of poverty in Africa. Our vision is to improve the lives of tens of millions of the poor in Zambia by giving them access to economic development loans and affordable, sustainable transportation in the form of a bicycle.