|Had to try it out....|
Zidane and Ronaldo
In 2008, Zinedine Zidane and Ronaldo donated 80.000 USD to Madagascar. The two football vedettes are UNDP good-will Ambassadors, a bit like the Angelinas of the UNDP, so to say. The money had to be used to fight poverty, and mean something to young people. The Cylco Pousse Project was born.
|Proud owners of cyclo pousses|
In Madagascar most pousse-pousses are not owned by their drivers. They are rented for a small daily fee (2000 to 3000 Ariary). Their chauffeurs do not earn much from them. With this project, drivers are leasing their bikes from a facility, called Le Parc, for 2.500 Ariary per day. Regular market price but with one difference: after having leased it for 14 months, the drivers have become the owner. For most of them, owning the thing is a dream come true...
The great thing about this little project is that it is still running, two years after UNDP has ended its support. The Parc is still operational. It is actually making modest profits, and new bikes are being produced and leased out. The drivers have formed an association and they're benefiting from a life and accident insurance. Their income has doubled or tripled. A sweet example of a sustainable project. This may sound obvious, but sustainability is a rare commodity in development land.
So what were the 'secrets' of this successful project? Nothing special, it is just a project that came at the right time, to the right place. The pousse pousse driver beneficiaries were involved in its conception, as were local authorities and the mayor. There was a market for the (more expensive but faster) cyclo-pousse services, and the bikes were produced locally, from simple materials, easy to maintain. The president of the association is a great guy with modern ideas.
There you have it. In our evaluation terminology we'd say that the project is relevant, demand-driven and market oriented. It is effectively managed, with adequate beneficiary participation and sufficient stakeholder consultation. It makes use of appropriate, cost-effective technologies and its set-up is sustainable.
|Denis in front of his new house, built with money earned with his Cycle Pousse|
So, thank you Zidane and Ronaldo, and if you ever make it to this great island, do give us a ring!