Transport bike for disabled children

Team (MOP Foundation): Bas van Zuijlen, Lenie Hoegen, Yessa Diarra



In Burkina Faso, more and more disabled children are given the opportunity to go to school. Legislation guarantees including education for each child and there are multiple development projects, especially in rural areas, with intensive awareness activities, home visits, rehabilitation activities, parent and teacher training etc. going on. More and more parents convince themselves to include their disabled children at the local school. In particular, they are sighted or blind children, hearing impaired or deaf children, phisically disabled children and children with brain injuries. Once in school, it is important for these children that they can also finish school. Especially children with motor disabilities are having trouble to come to school and back. The distance they have to bridge is too long. For parents, it is difficult to transport them. You will see parents on their feet taking the already-grown-up kids on their back or by wheelbarrows to school.


The MOP Foundation, inspired by the Dutch bakfiets, wants to develop a prototype for a bicycle suitable for production at local level, with local materials and for an acceptable price. TThe bike must be suitable for transporting the disabled children, but also for transportation of agriculture and other products or livestock to and from the market or elsewhere.

The second phase foresees teaching the local people how the bike can be produced. For the test period, local organisations will be involved, which develop an inclusive education project in two regions with different geography and who encounter the above mentioned problems in real life.

The project is at a small-scale because experience taught us that it is what works best in Burkina Faso.

The bicycle frame will be made out of only straight tubular steel. THe design will use few imported materials, but it might use more working hours. The working hours are paid the same amount as the buyers working hours and thus are fair.

On the front or rear of the bike several containers can be fixed, depending on the final design and on the needs.

Key activities

1. Bicycle development by the designer Bas van Zuijlen, in collaboration with Yessa Diara (Burkina Faso)
2. Testing with two children in the regions of Gaoua and Garango, where an inclusive project is going on
3. Local production of the bicycles with technical guidance by the coordinator of the MOP Foundation

About the team

Lenie Hoegen, working in Burkina Faso since 2006 at institutes for disabled people and schooling disabled children (Sensorial Handicap Cooperation, Light for the world), became interested in a transport bike design for disabled children. She is supported by the Dutch association MOP.

Yessie Diarra was born in the Ivory Coast from Burkinabe parents. In 2000 he returned to Burkina Faso, started working as a car mechanic and met Lenie while she was working for the Liliane foundation. Yessa is Executive Coordinator of the MOP Foundation, handling finances, reports and financial studies.

Bas van Zuijlen is a friend of Lenie since 1999 and an industrial designer. He is interested in global issues and was an active member of the associations CMR, CCFD, Kokopelli – which deal with world-equity, farmers issues, fair development and ecology. His dream is to put his design skills and idea to work for social issues, fighting poverty and protecting equality in low-developed ares in the world.