“By connecting communities and cultures we believe that change only happens with a change of perception and the power of voice. Giving women and children a voice creates a much more powerful ripple than a handout, and empowering them to use their voice can change their lives, their communities, and their countries from within. Organically and sustainability creating change with the individual which acts as a catalytic spark through the entire global community at large.”
Osprey Ambassador Shannon Galpin is the founder of Mountain2Mountain, an organization that works to empower women & girls in conflict zones. The following is reposted from the Mountain2Mountain blog.
Strength in Numbers Global Solidarity Ride
August 30th, 2014
Bikers around the world join to pedal a revolution on two wheels for women’s rights!
This Saturday, August 30th, we will pedal a revolution! Bikers, cyclists, commuters, and striders will take to their wheels in solidarity with the Afghan women who dare to ride, and in remembrance of the women that dared to ride before and in doing so, paved the way for independent mobility and freedom for women around the world. Create your own ride and join us.
Inspired? Get involved this Saturday, August 30th as part of the Global Solidarity Ride. Over 60 bike rides in 13 countries creates a global movement on two wheels in support of the Afghan women who dare to ride. You can join one of the existing rides listed here, create your own, or simply dedicate your bike ride on Saturday to the Afghan girls. Send us photos, tell us where you rode, and instagram or tweet with #solidarityride2014. You can join the conversation on Facebook here. You can support this work and donate at www.mountain2mountain.org/donate
Thanks to our incredible partners at Liv/giant we have been continuing to support the Afghan Women’s National Cycling Team with bikes, gear, clothing, and I have been working to help with training and coaching over the past few trips to Afghanistan. In a country that has never allowed its women to ride bikes, a group of Afghan women have been quietly making history. The women have been steadily improving, and they have an invitation to race at the Asian Games in South Korea this September. This ride will directly support their efforts in its inaugural year to show the world what Afghan women are capable of.
The Global Solidarity Ride is based off our original Panjshir Tour which we started in 2010 as a way to engage cycling communities in support of our projects in Afghanistan that benefited women and girls. I was the first woman to mountain bike in Afghanistan, and those first rides took place in the Panjshir Valley. I asked men all over the country in rural and urban areas, can women ride bikes? Would you allow your wife, daughter, sister to ride a bike? The answer was always no. So I created the Panjshir Tour as a way to use the bike as a vehicle to raise awareness and funding for our projects in Afghanistan. Now that we have seen Afghan women riding bikes, making history, and pedaling a revolution, the Solidarity Ride seemed like an incredible way to unite communities around the world on two wheels and show the Afghan women that they are not alone, the world sees what they are doing and supports them.
The Afghan women will be riding too, so that on August 30th no matter where you are the in world, men and women will be spinning their wheels on concrete and in dirt, united in the freedom of a bike!
For more information, visit the Global Solidarity Ride Facebook page, Mountain2Mountain & Afghan Cycles.
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