Wheels 4 Life has an unglamorous but vital mission: to provide bikes to people in developing countries in need of transportation. Famed mountain bike trials rider and MTB adventurer Hans Rey, along with his wife Carmen, founded Wheels 4 Life in 2005 and since that time, the group has delivered more than 6,600 bikes to dozens of countries in Africa, South America, and Asia. The non-profit currently has 28 projects in progress around the world!
Wheels 4 Life generally buys bikes in the country where they’re being donated which helps the local economy and also ensures that replacement parts are generally available. This also saves on transportation and logistics costs which means maximum impact for minimum cost.
The bikes Wheels 4 Life donates generally cost between $50 and $150 and there are two main styles they typically work with. “California Bicycle” bikes feature knobby tires and resemble mountain bikes, though they’re fitted with fenders and racks for maximum versatility. In Africa, India, and China, the group typically donates Phoenix, Avon, Hero, or Black Mamba bikes which are super durable and reliable (see photos above).
There are a number of ways you can support Wheels 4 Life. Tax-deductible cash donations are what fuel this rocket and $150 buys a whole bike, though donations in any amount are greatly appreciated. You can also purchase and share the Wheels 4 Life documentary (narrated by John McEnroe!) or participate in one of the group’s fundraisers during the year. Add your trail and gear reviews to Singletracks this week and we’ll also donate $1 for every review to Wheels 4 Life and Trips for Kids.