Projects for Peace: The Vision of Kathryn W. Davis

"My challenge to you is to bring about a mind-set of preparing for peace, instead of preparing for war."

Appropriate Technology and Small Business Development

Project #
Bucknell University
  • Thomas Apruzzese
  • Tom Bollinger
  • Brian Chiu
  • Kevin Matthews

Appropriate Technology and Small Business Development

In 2009, a group of Bucknell students traveled to Uganda with a Projects for Peace grant where they founded “Bicycles Against Poverty” (BAP). Their idea was to rent or sell bicycles to be used by community members in order to facilitate new business ventures and access to resources and social services. In 2011, another group of Bucknell students took their Projects for Peace grant to Uganda to build on the success of BAP.

Before they left Bucknell, students designed three simple devices that would greatly expand the usefulness of the hundreds of bikes BAP has brought to the community. Their goal was to make sure that the devices would be inexpensive to build and maintain, be made with local materials, and be completed locally. In Uganda, they worked with the local BAP team and with the Gulu Youth Development Association, a nationally accredited vocational school that reaches out to young people with no formal education, offering training in metal fabrication, carpentry, mechanics, and tailoring.

The 2011 Bucknell team worked beside students to build bicycle-powered grain mills, bicycle carts, and a bicycle taxi attachment. The grain mill uses the bicycle power to crush millet and sorghum grains, cutting down the time required to hand grind enough flour for a family for a day from over an hour to less than seven minutes. The bicycle cart is designed to be exceptionally stable, even carrying more that 200 pounds. The taxi attachment is still in the prototype stage, but two were built and students will continue to refine the design. This project successfully built on an earlier Project for Peace, extending its reach and deepening its impact.