Our members live in beautifully scenic villages, however they are literally in the middle of nowhere and therefore the 1-4 hour one-way journey that they need to make at least once every 3 days to their local market is difficult to undertake. Women will walk in particularly harsh conditions - pot-holed, dusty, rocky, hilly paths in 40 degree celcius heat, with their items to sell on their head and most will undertake this with a baby strapped to their back.
In the past we have secured the help of a different charity to enable our members to purchase bicycles at half the normal selling cost, therefore women are paying Ghc35 (£17/US$24) for a bicycle that would otherwise cost GHc70 (£35/US$52). Most recently we were able to enable 70 people to purchase bicycles that would otherwise be completely out of their reach.
As well as receiving a bicycle we also ensured all women attended a 2-day training course so that they could learn to ride in a safe environment and also to learn basic repair skills so that bicycles weren't left somewhere to rot as soon as a problem was encountered. As a result of this training several women now repair bicycles for other village members, for a price and therefore they've developed a new income generating skill.
Unfortunately we are no longer receiving the bicycles from the charity who we initially worked with. We are therefore keen to secure funding from other sources so that women can still pay GHc35, but we can fund the remaining GHc35 needed to purchase a bicycle, this equates to £17.50/US$25. We are also keen to be able to give members a bicycle for less or no charge who are experiencing particularly difficult financial challenges, therefore the cost for this is GHc70 (£35/US$50)