Mobility Resources Inc 

'Our Land Rover is broken down.'

'My bicycle is broken and there are no parts available to repair it.’

'The rainy season has begun and we can’t use the road.'

'There’s no fuel available for a week.'

'Yes, I can come by bike, but I can’t transport all the medical supplies.' 

Do any of these remarks sound familiar? Does your work experience difficulties with transport?

A new group based in the USA, Mobility Resources Inc, is dedicated to helping groups improve their transport. On dirt roads, even if vehicles are available, it is often impossible to drive along rough tracks, especially during the rainy season. The cost of vehicles and their high running costs usually mean that most projects are quite unable to afford them. Mobility Resources have therefore developed a range of strong, lightweight bicycles together with a huge variety of trailers, carts and stretchers. The bicycles (often known as Mountain Bikes) are ideal for difficult roads and tracks. The range of trailers and carts are designed with the needs of health projects in mind. Most of the designs will collapse for storage. 

Another useful idea is the Healing Stretcher. The stretcher allows patients to be transported in reasonable comfort, by two people, along trails and tracks where vehicles are unable to drive. It has a single thick tire to cushion bumps.

They will export the bikes and other items worldwide. Their costs are very reasonable, and they provide help with training, repairs and ordering spare parts.

For further information contact:  Mobility Resources Inc, PO Box 381, Santa Fe, NM 87504, USA. 

Training Courses 

Development Studies Course - Selly Oak Colleges 

This 11 week course is designed for the special needs of staff from voluntary and church development agencies. The course gives participants the opportunity to reflect on past experience and future work, improve skills in management and widen their experience of the development process. 

There are two courses a year, with about 20 students on each. Since 1974 the course has been attended by over 500 participants from nearly 80 countries. Applicants cannot be accepted until they are assured of financial support. This is usually provided by employers. The Selly Oak Colleges have limited access to scholarship support, but may be able to advise on sources of funding. 

For further information write to:  Laurence Taylor Development Studies, Selly Oak Colleges, Birmingham, B29 6LQ, UK. 

Save time between crops - plant maize seedlings 

Here is a simple idea from DCFRN to give maize seedlings an early start, either saving time between crops, or getting them ready to plant out as soon as the rains begin… 

Step 1 Cut old dry maize cobs, (from which the seeds have been removed) into sections 5 to 6cm long. Soak them in liquid manure (manure mixed with water) for about a month.

Step 2 Remove the maize cob sections when they are slightly rotten but still have their shape. Press two or three maize seeds into each section and place them upright, in your seedling bed.  

Step 3 Cover the seedling bed with about 1cm of fine soil or compost.  

Step 4 Sprinkle seedling bed well with water. In dry or cool weather, cover with a layer of straw or black plastic sheeting.

Step 5 When seeds germinate, remove straw or plastic and water well.  

Step 6 When maize seedlings have developed three leaves, transplant the whole cob section into the field.