Category: Asia

Manila Bike Party

The Firefly Brigade in Manila organized the 12th Annual Tour of Fireflies, a popular event advocating the use of the bicycle as an alternative means of transportation, in Manila April 18, 2010. This year’s theme, I Vote to Bike, hopes to remind the right of people to clean air and healthier, greener, sustainable communities, with nearly 10,000 cyclists stretched out in an eight kilometer long peloton on the ride route.

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Firefly Brigade’ is a Philippines citizen’s action group formed in 1999 to work for clean air and a habitable, people-friendly environment in our cities. “The fireflies have fled the city,” says their website, “because they could not stand its dirty air. All of us cyclists, pedestrians, commuters, even those who ride cars who live, work and raise families in the city may suffer the same fate. We continue to dirty our city’s air with polluting vehicles and factories. As a result, we also risk disappearing like the fireflies. Why resign ourselves to this fate? We have a choice. We can fight for clean air and bring the fireflies back.


Support international bicycle businesses through microfinance

Kiva is a Web 2.0 microfinance community allows the affluent to support and interact with small businesses in remote places. Lenders give loans as small as $25 to enterpreneurs all over the world. One kind of business that participants can support through Kiva is bicycle shops. Consider for example the Reaksmey Sar Group of Ta Reab Doun Sar Village, Cambodia:

This village bank loan which consists of twelve people is located in Ta Reab Doun Sar village in Kandal Province. Mrs. Reaksmey Sar is the village bank president who has been selected by the members. She is a 43 year old housewife and the mother of four children, all of whom are attending the local school. Her husband, Mr. Koem Muny, repairs bicycles. In this business, he now faces a small problem because he does not have enough money to buy bike equipment for his customers. Thus, his wife, Mrs. Reaksmey Sar, decided to ask for a loan to buy more bike equipment for her husband’s business.

The Reaksmey Sar Group needs $175 in increments as small as $25 each to complete their loan. Why not support cycling in Cambodia this holiday season? And if you do join Kiva, be sure to sign on to the “Move Your World” team of cycling supporters.