MANILA, Philippines – Bike Scouts Philippines will launch on November 2, a 1,000-kilometer bike ride to raise awareness and teach basic disaster preparedness education in some of the country’s most typhoon-prone provinces.
A team of 4 riders will depart Manila on November for a projected 10-day ride to Tacloban City, one of the hardest-hit areas by Super Typhoon Yolanda (Haiyan). From there, they will go to Calicoan Island, Eastern Samar to conclude the ride.
The team will distribute flashlights and promote the need for basic disaster preparedness along the way, while shooting videos and photos to document the journey. They will be followed by a support vehicle to carry the supplies.
Bike Scouts Philippies is a group of volunteers who serve as bicycle messengers in areas severely affected by extreme weather and other natural disasters. The group works to establish an alternative line of communication and supply using bicycles to (1) collect survivor data, (2) deliver critical suuplies, and (3) gather personal messages from evacuees that is forwarded to their immediate relatives.
The group played a significant role in Rappler’s coverage of Yolanda in 2013. (READ: Riders in the storm)
“Since then, our work has shifted to establishing community-based volunteer bicycle essenger teams that can serve their individual communities in times of natural disasters,” Myles Delfin, the group’s founder said.
The group has established volunteer groups in Sulungan, Eastern Samar, Tacloban City, and Caramoan, Camarines Sur.
Bike Scouts Philippines is looking for financial support to run the project. They need an estimated P100,000 (USD 2,100) to complete the ride.
The money will go to the logistical costs of the riders. The group will also raise additional funds for the materials to be distributed.
“This ride will help raise awareness about greater support and preparation in places that are still vulnerable to extreme weather and other natural disasters. (It) will also give us an opportunity to talk to people from these communities and gather materials for stories about the places we visit and people we engaged with,” Delfin added.
Rappler’s civic engagement arm, MovePH, will follow the 10-day event.
Corporate and media sponsorships are available. Those interested to support this project can contact Myles Delfin at 0908-4721554, 0906-632025. You can also visit their Facebook page here. – Rappler.com
Bike Scouts Philippines is a Project Agos partner.
*USD 1 = P 46.95