These Bamboo Bikes Fight Poverty in Zambia These Bamboo Bikes Fight Poverty in Zambia

These Bamboo Bikes Fight Poverty in Zambia

by samba yonga Makeshift

June 2, 2013

The Zambulance is a bike-drawn cart designed to weather tough terrain on the way to a clinic. In villages outside of Lusaka, family and friends resort to transporting the sick and wounded in metal wheelbarrows by foot to the nearest medical care. The Zambulance is quicker and also more comfortable—fitted with a padded seat and cover.

Another product, the Zamcart, helps transport goods, generally produce moved by farmers to market. The company recently launched the Njovu—meaning “elephant” in Cicewa—a long bike the company calls the “20-tonne truck” of bicycles. The Niovu bike sports two seats and reinforcements to the steel frame for heavy loads over rough terrain and long distances.

“To date we have sold 10,000 bikes, and the demand continues to rise,” explained Bwalya. “The aim is not only to make profit but to also change the lives of the people in Zambia and our imme- diate community.” 

A version of this article originally appeared in Makeshift, a quarterly magazine about creativity and invention in informal economies around the world. This is the first time it has appeared online.

Photos courtesy of Zambikes.
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These Bamboo Bikes Fight Poverty in Zambia