World Vision Ghana gives bicycles to schoolchildren
World Vision Ghana (WVG) has launched a project to provide bicycles to schoolchildren in some cocoa growing communities in the Ahafo Ano North municipality of the Ashanti Region, to facilitate their movement to school daily.
The Education Technical Programme Manager of WVG, Mr Andrew Ofosu-Dankyi, said the aim of the project, known as the Bicycle Education Empowerment Programme (BEEP), was to improve the children’s access to school and to ensure that they accessed quality education in the basic schools in the cocoa growing communities.
A total of 540 bicycles were distributed to schoolchildren in the municipality.
He said the distance that some schoolchildren and their teachers covered to go to school daily, affected their retention rate in school after enrolment, and the WVG deemed it fit to support them with the bicycles to enable them to attend school on time and also spend quality time to learn.
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He said the project was in collaboration with World Bicycle Relief and Mondelez International Cocoa Life.
For the past two years, WVG and World Bicycle Relief have distributed up to 5,500 bicycles to schoolchildren in the Nkwanta South, Kasena Nankana, Sekyere East and the Afram Plains districts.
Mr Ofosu-Dankyi said he was grateful to their partners for helping WVG make the project a reality.
He urged parents, teachers and all stakeholders to come together to help sustain the project and also extend it to other deprived communities.
The Global Director of Programmes for World Bicycle Relief, Mr Eric Showell, in an interview with the Daily Graphic, said the target of the organisation was to use bicycles to tackle barriers to education, health and economic development.
He said walking long distances to school every morning was a major contributory factor to the practice of some children, reporting late to school and making them miss first lessons sometimes.
Mr Showell urged the beneficiaries to use the bicycles for the intended purposes and advised parents not to take the bicycles from their children.
A committee to help in providing spare parts to the beneficiaries has also been put in place.
The Municipal Director of Education, Mr Samuel Kyereme, expressed appreciation to WVG and their partners for the kind gesture.
He said basic education was very essential in every country’s developmental agenda and, therefore, must be made free and compulsory.