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Jolly Riders donates 300 bikes to schools

Oct 26, 2010, 1:16 PM | Article By: Alieu O. Jabang

Jolly Riders, a UK-Gambian-based charity, has again donated 303 bicycles to three schools in the country, to complement government’s efforts in providing access to education and easing mobility constraints of students.

At a presentation ceremony held on Thursday at the Jolly Riders headquarters in Gunjur, Kombo South in West Coast Region, Kafuta Upper Basic and Ndemban Basic Cycle schools in the West Coast Region, and Sololo Basic Cycle School in the Central River Region each received 101 bicycles.

In his address to the schools, the director of the Jolly Riders Foundation in The Gambia, Babucarr Boyo Touray, said the donated 303 bicycles to the three schools had increased the number of bikes donated to Gambian schools from 2006 to date by Jolly Riders to 7,600.

“This is all geared towards complementing government’s effort in providing access to school for the attainment of quality education throughout the country,” he said, calling on the beneficiaries to maintain the bikes to make the best use of them.

The Jolly Riders director added: “We will continue to capacitise your schools so long as you maintain your bicycles in good order, and the sky is the limit. In two weeks’ time we will receive another full container with bicycles and all are for you Gambian schools and your students but maintenance will not be compromised.”

Aja Fatou Jallow of the Regional Education Office, representing the Ministry of Education, thanked the Jolly Riders for their gesture and encouraged them to continue to help Gambian schools to attain quality education by providing transportation for students to ease access to school.

Ms Jallow advised also the schools to ensure the bikes are properly maintained. “It must be understood by all that the bicycles are meant for school use only,” she said.

In his vote of thanks on behalf of his fellow principals whose schools received the bikes, Sololo Basic Cycle School’s principal Demba Jallow thanked the Jolly Riders for the “timely support”.

He said some students in his school trek 24 kilometres to and from school daily.

“This affects the performance of students because they will be very tired before the end of the day,” he said, adding: “This is a blessing in disguise for me and my school and I believe it is the same for the other schools that have benefited from this donation.”