In 2015 Bikes for the World sent our first container of bikes to the established Moroccan program known as DARNA (Our House). DARNA was started, and continues to operate as a safe home for women and children.
Recognizing a mother's role in a strong, thriving family, DARNA put emphasis on creating opportunities and training for women and young girls. To assist in the effort to keep kids enrolled in school, DARNA introduced bicycles to those students at risk of dropping out due to long, tiring commutes.
From our initial donation, over 400 students received bicycles in northern Morocco. 117 of these student beneficiaries were girls.
This summer Bikes for the World helped place another container of bikes with DARNA through St. Louis Bicycle Works. Bicycle Works operates a youth program in St. Louis and a couple times a year finds itself with an overstock of bikes for their program.
When they approached us this year to place another container we identified the need from Morocco and found St. Louis had the type of bikes requested. It was a match!
This shipment arrived late in September and students have already been paired with bikes. This time, the bikes were distributed among nearly 40 different communities and the kids ranged in age from 8-17.
We checked back in with several of the students who received bikes from the first donation in 2015. Laila (on the left) loves her bike because she can go to school with her friends. Her mom agrees, noticing that since her daughter received a bike her grades have improved. Laila now has more time to study and arrives to school early and less tired.
Miriem (on the right) uses her bike to visit her Grandmother who lives far away. She can now travel that distance on her own schedule, without needing to wait for public transportation which can also be expensive. "I feel much more independent now."
Miriem also enjoys the physical exercise her bike provides. "I feel like a bird, I love it!"