How bike parts build communities


On the side of a road in Khayelitsha sits a little shack with a lot of heart. Bongani is inside, tools in hand, putting old bicycle parts together. He stops to look at his work. It’s not going to win the Tour de France but the second-hand bicycle he has built will put food on his table and become someone’s form of transport.

This is Bongani’s mission. He collects pieces from old bicycles in the area and rebuilds them. He started fixing bikes for his neighbours but soon realised that he could make a steady income when more and more people requested his services. He started the Bicycle Workshop in his backyard and built a business.

Bongani is often surrounded by a group of children from his community who help him clean and carry equipment. They come in after school and on weekends. He hopes that they can follow in his footsteps and stay out of trouble. In the process of building a business, he is giving back to the people around him.