Bicycles offer hope for brighter future
A gift of more than 200 bicycles is making it easier for children to attend school and reach their full potential
By William Anim-Dankwa, CCFC communications manager, Ghana
Joana, (pictured) used to walk 10 km to her rural school in Northern Ghana. On hot days, the trek was physically draining; on rainy days strong winds dampened her spirit. Sometimes she crossed paths with snakes. The journey also left her vulnerable to bullying by older students.
Many of Joana’s peers had a similar journey to school. They couldn’t concentrate in class after the long trek. Many got poor grades and lost their drive to go to school. Eventually, their parents put them to work on their farms.
Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) provided a much-needed solution, donating more than 200 bicycles to as many students last year.
Now that their travel time is shorter, the students have more energy and can concentrate in class better.
“The bicycle gift has removed my fear of not completing school. The ride to school is now full of joy. Children who don’t have a bicycle say I am blessed.” — Sarah, 13
Joana, 12, is already noticing the difference it’s making in her life. “Going to school has become exciting, particularly when I ride with the other girls to school,” she says. “I used to get poor marks in math (40 percent), but I am gradually improving. I now get over 60 percent.”
Samira used to miss school, often after tiring morning treks to fetch water. Now she attends regularly thanks to her new bike. “I am sure [I’ll] improve in math, so I can achieve my dream of becoming a nurse,” says the 12-year-old.
Teachers can see the difference the bikes make, too. “[They’ve] brought excitement. The children who live further away from school now come regularly,” notes John Naporo, the head teacher at the local school. “[Their] work is also improving, and we are grateful to CCFC and their donors for this great improvement in our community.”
About Christian Children’s Fund of Canada:
Christian Children’s Fund of Canada (CCFC) is a child-centred international development organization and a member of ChildFund Alliance. For nearly 60 years, CCFC has worked with children, communities, donors and other partners — changing lives through improved health, education and clean water. CCFC works in 12 countries across Africa, Asia and the Americas, to support more than 700,000 children, youth and community members.