Backroads Pledges $40,000 in Matching Grant Funds during July Fundraising Campaign
Backroads, the world’s leading active travel company, and World Bicycle Relief are joining forces again during the month of July to help deliver the power of bicycles to students in need. With a generous match grant of $40,000, Backroads encourages others to contribute to World Bicycle Relief’s July fundraising campaign, Wheels in the Field: Zambia, The Next Generation, and help reach the goal of providing 3,200 bicycles for the next generation of students in Zambia.
Over four million children live in poverty in Zambia and more than 375,000 children in rural regions are not enrolled in school. Many factors contribute to children not attending school. For rural students, a common and significant barrier to accessing education is distance; students often face long, exhausting walks over difficult terrain. For girl students, who are also required to perform hours of domestic chores in the morning, a long walk proves even more challenging. Students often arrive late and tired and academic performance suffers, if they manage to stay in school at all.
Backroads’ match grant to World Bicycle Relief will have a direct and immediate impact on the lives of students in Zambia. A 2012 Education Report highlighted that access to a high quality bicycle dramatically changes educational outcomes; students with bikes increase attendance by 28% and increase academic performance by 59%.
“Backroads’ involvement with World Bicycle Relief parallels our efforts to promote the bike, not only as a recreational tool, but also as a powerful agent of change for students in rural developing regions worldwide,” said Backroads Founder and President, Tom Hale. “Supporting World Bicycle Relief’s July campaign speaks to the core of what we believe in as a company.”
World Bicycle Relief has delivered over 50,000 bicycles to students in Zambia since 2009. Wheels in the Field: Zambia, The Next Generation will support World Bicycle Relief’s continued commitment to provide more bicycles and brighter futures for the next generation of Zambian students.
“Together, we can go further,” says Katie Bolling, Development Director of World Bicycle Relief. “That’s the power of our relationship with Backroads. We’re truly grateful that Backroads not only believes in our work, but has committed to real change by putting bikes in the hands of students who need them most.”
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