Rwanda - Burundi 2011

In November 2011 Brussels Airlines organized the first edition of “Bike for Africa”, a mountainbike trip of about 300 km from Kigali to Bujumbura. We raised a total of 93,000 euro for SOS Children’s Villages in Rwanda, Burundi and the other 19 Brussels Airlines destinations in Africa.

In November 2011 Brussels Airlines organized the first edition of “Bike for Africa”, a mountainbike trip of about 300 km from Kigali (Rwanda) to Bujumbura (Burundi). From 11th to 16th November, a group of about 50 Brussels Airlines people together with a support team and some sponsors biked from Kigali (Rwanda) to Bujumbura (Burundi), a trip of 280 km through the “land of the 1.000 hills”.

In the first edition of Bike for Africa we raised a total of 93,000 euro for SOS Children’s Villages in Rwanda, Burundi and the other 19 Brussels Airlines destinations in Africa. The aid was used for the continued supply of necessary medical care to vulnerable children. The sum of 93.000 euro covered more than 10.000 medical consultations for the poorest in the African communities.

The adventure started in the SOS Children’s Village of Kigali and ends 5 days later in the SOS Children’s Village of Bujumbura. Furthermore, the group also brought goods to villages, clinics and projects along the way, as well as 100 bikes that were distributed locally, a precious economic asset in the African society. Le Beau Velo de Ravel, in collaboration with the Walloon waste disposal companies and l’Ecole St Luc of Liege, recycled and refurbished 2nd hand bikes (e.g. from container parks) in order to give them a second life and contribute to a cleaner environment. The bikes are made from metal and can be assembled and repaired, a task for local technicians or youngsters with a technical education. A teacher from l’Ecole St Luc and 2 students installed a workplace in the SOS centre upfront in order to train the local people on how to repair the bikes. This allowed the local technicians to perform the maintenance of the bikes, so that they are a genuine added value.

In no time the participation list was completed, a clear sign that this project lies close to the heart of many people. Apart from this charitable effort, highly appreciated by the local communities and authorities, the event was a huge success in many other aspects: a great physical challenge, enjoying the unique African landscape, being welcomed by hundreds of enthusiast people in the villages crossed, and above all a fantastic team building event.

Jali, a Belgian singer, was the godfather of Bike for Africa I. Jali, (his official name being Jean-Pierre Ntwali) is a rising star of 24 in Belgium. He discovered music when he visited Rwanda, the country where he was born, and where he has lived during 2 years as an adolescent. Back in Belgium, he dedicated himself to his passion and started writing and composing his first songs under the name “Jali”, the name of a hill in Rwanda. Jali accepted to be the godfather of Bike for Africa I and together with his manager Mike he joined our adventure. This biking trip was broadcasted in a programme on RTBF (“Le Beau Vélo de Ravel”).

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our Participants

Matthias Spohr's picture
Matthias Spohr
Melissa Vanborren's picture
Melissa Vanborren
Julia Reinhardt's picture
Julia Reinhardt
Matthias Funke's picture
Matthias Funke
Saskia Michels's picture
Saskia Michels
Dieter Vranckx's picture
Dieter Vranckx
Michael Knitter's picture
Michael Knitter
Florian Weber's picture
Florian Weber
Melvin Vanderstylen's picture
Melvin Vanderstylen
Frederic Stiels's picture
Frederic Stiels
Simon De Backer's picture
Simon De Backer
Robert Jahn's picture
Robert Jahn
Pieterjan Luyten's picture
Pieterjan Luyten
Markus Leopold's picture
Markus Leopold
Lennart Krippner's picture
Lennart Krippner
Laurens Verlinden's picture
Laurens Verlinden
Joerg Beissel's picture
Joerg Beissel
Iryna Shtompel's picture
Iryna Shtompel
Griet bellekens's picture
Griet bellekens
Frank Bauer's picture
Frank Bauer
Claudia Tluk's picture
Claudia Tluk
Herman Geysemans's picture
Herman Geysemans
Thomas Blondiau's picture
Thomas Blondiau
Steven Feytens's picture
Steven Feytens
Rudy Serneels's picture
Rudy Serneels
Martine Vereerstraeten's picture
Martine Vereerstraeten
Anne Tricot's picture
Anne Tricot
Walter Windey's picture
Walter Windey
Bart Neukermans's picture
Bart Neukermans
Jan Derycke's picture
Jan Derycke
Sven Peeters's picture
Sven Peeters
Thomas Dieu's picture
Thomas Dieu
Bjorn Cornelis's picture
Bjorn Cornelis
Josiane De Neef's picture
Josiane De Neef
Yves Kerremans's picture
Yves Kerremans
Ilse Verhelst's picture
Ilse Verhelst
Stefan Van Nereaux's picture
Stefan Van Nereaux
Wim Boecxstaens's picture
Wim Boecxstaens
Mike Vanderlinden's picture
Mike Vanderlinden
Uli Van Bruggen's picture
Uli Van Bruggen
Monique Dijk's picture
Monique Dijk
Matthias Lefèvre's picture
Matthias Lefèvre
Herman Carpentier's picture
Herman Carpentier
Kirsti Vrancken's picture
Kirsti Vrancken

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