Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Scallywags Arrives

Joey & Chris came in last Sunday. They are from Scallywags bicycle cooperative in Minneapolis, MN. They have come to help with mechanic training in the cooperatives and to help with the building of the 1,000 bicycles coming into the country currently. The bikes have been imprisoned in the customs since the 2nd of April, and we will have them emancipated in a few days (fingers crossed). 500 are in customs, and 500 are going to arrive in Rwanda in the next few days.

Anyways, Joey & Chris rested up for an afternoon and the next day they came with me out to Nyakizu yesterday, a cooperative receiving 100 bicycles. We trained 5 mechanics from the cooperative, each coming from a different sector and one that works at the washing station. We hope that this will help those with the coffee bike over the wider area. I went into a meeting with the President, Vice President and the secretary of the cooperative and Joey & Chris went strait into guiding the mechanics workshop. They did great in explaining the way in which to adjust the brakes, the derailleur, the bottom bracket, the headset and many other aspects of the bicycle. They went about teaching in a very patient and encouraging way. They really believe in this program, in the value of the bicycle to change lives, and they have a desire to teach, to encourage and motivate bicycle culture in general. It is great having them here.

We are now waiting for the bikes to come out of customs, and when they arrive it will get pretty crazy. We will be building hundreds of bikes a day while simultaneously distributing them in cooperatives. I will keep this updated as well as I can during this time.

Talk to you later.


Joe and Toni said...

the photos look great! what a beautiful season of life for everyone there participating in this project. were praying for those bikes! Good job, Good job!

Lee said...

just saw that the first load has made it through! what a gift! would love to hear more, leegates@gmail.com. can't wait to hear how the distribution goes. just curious, is OI helping with that part?

Pamela said...

It's all coming together, you must be so excited!

KobeNashClash said...

Shout Out! to Chris Huff!..from friends MIKE, DAWN and FRANCIS in Minneapolis...Great photos/notes...Looks/Sounds like you guys are doing GREAT!!!

Way to Go! Keep it Up!

Betsy said...

Yo Chris,
Hello from Betsy Bowen and David now visiting in Kampala, Uganda with Phil and Paige who live here. Great project with the bikes for the resourceful people. Rock on! BB