A study by the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) found that more than a fifth of primary-aged children and nearly 60% of youths aged 15-17 in Sub-Saharan Africa are not attending school, partly due to lack of reliable transportation options. To help these underserved students reach school, one of the world's largest transportation companies, FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp., has donated 200 bicycles and maintenance kits to disadvantaged youths in rural African communities.

FedEx collaborated with Qhubeka Charity to donate bicycles to students in the Uitkyk region of South Africa. Qhubeka Charity operates programmes that help people earn bicycles, improving access to schools, clinics, and jobs. Bicycles can significantly impact the lives of those living in extreme poverty by addressing socio-economic challenges at the most basic level. The bicycles donated by FedEx were provided to students aged 17-19 from a secondary school in South Africa.

"Education is a fundamental right of every individual, and we at FedEx believe in its power to uplift lives. We take pride in our partnership with Qhubeka, which is aligned with our commitment to addressing socio-economic challenges at the grassroots level," said Natasha Parmanand, Managing Director Operations, Sub-Saharan Africa, FedEx Express MEISA.

In many African regions, children still have to walk long distances daily to reach school, even under challenging circumstances. The lack of dependable transportation means students cannot entirely focus on their studies. This shortage of reliable transportation also negatively impacts their health, limiting their opportunities for personal and economic development.

"The donation of these bicycles is not only an enabler in the learning journey but also an effort to empower the youth to overcome obstacles and create a better future," added Parmanand. The FedEx Cares programme is dedicated to social responsibility and supports initiatives like this one that promote access to education. Each student who receives a bicycle will also receive cycle safety training and a maintenance kit.

Anthony Fitzhenry, founder of Qhubeka Charity, also stated that they strongly believe that bicycles can change lives. He added, "Through this partnership with FedEx, we are not just delivering bicycles; we are delivering hope, empowerment, and the opportunity for a better future. The simple gift of a bicycle can have a profound impact on a student's life, making the journey to school quicker, easier, and happier."

Read Full Article