September 21, 2007 (Chicago, Il) – In the first study of its kind to measure the effectiveness of bicycle relief efforts in disaster situations, TANGO International today released its report on Project Tsunami, the World Bicycle Relief program that granted 24,300 bicycles to men, women and children in Sri Lanka following the tsunami of December 2004.
Among its findings, the report highlights the value of bicycles to the rebuilding efforts, and the ongoing importance they play in the lives of those affected by the natural disaster:
More than two years after the tsunami, 88 percent of recipients still rely on the bicycle as part of their livelihood Bicycles save between 10 and 20 percent of a household’s annual income over other transportation alternatives, and in the poorest households as much as 30 percent – income that contributes directly to livelihood security Bicycle distribution has effectively mobilized and empowered women, with 82 percent of women recipients reporting that they use the bicycle for income-generating activities
Highlights from the study will be available on September 26, as part of the “One Goal, Many Solutions: Empowering the World Through Bicycles” forum at the Interbike trade show in Las Vegas. This forum includes several organizations engaged in humanitarian efforts using bicycles -BikeTown Africa, CaliforniaBike, Project Rwanda, Sister Shops, Wheels4Life and World Bicycle Relief – who will present their projects to bicycle industry attendees. It takes place in Conference Room 601 at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 26.
The group will also host a booth on the main floor, next to Bicycling Magazine and across from SRAM, with special appearances by Ned Overend (Wednesday 2-3 p.m.) and Trek/VW pro Jeremiah Bishop (Wednesday and Thursday, 9-11 a.m.) Bicycles used in Africa and other developing nations will be on display, along with information about each program.