Riders for Health to appear in new BBC World News documentary

Friday, 12 February 2010

Riders for Health, the official charity of MotoGP, will be the subject of a new BBC documentary to be shown across the world on BBC World News this weekend. The film will show how the organisation is using reliable motorcycles to save lives across Africa.

The programme is the first in a new series presented by the business expert, Alvin Hall, entitled ‘Alvin’s Guide to Good Business’. During the series he will look at how social enterprise organisations, like Riders for Health, are helping to bring sustainable development to some of the world’s poorest communities.

The half hour documentary will be broadcast on BBC World News at 02.30 and 08.30 GMT on Saturday 13th February, and at 14.30 and 21.30 on Sunday 14th February. You can check your local listings on the BBC World News website.

If you miss the documentary on TV, you will be able to watch the film on the Riders for Health website at www.riders.org from Saturday 13th February.

The film follows Riders’ founders, Andrea and Barry Coleman, as they help to launch a brand new programme in Zambia. As part of their newest programme Riders for Health are using reliable motorcycles to help transport blood and sputum samples from clinics to the laboratory in rural Zambia, speeding up the time it takes to test for diseases like HIV or tuberculosis.

Using their motorcycles, Riders’ sample couriers can now visit health centres each week to pick up samples and then return the following week with the results. Once the nurses there have a confirmed diagnosis, patients can start treatment if necessary and needless deaths due to delays can be avoided. At the heart of Riders’ programme is the regular maintenance of the vehicles, so they do not break down, and communities can rely on them.

This means health workers can concentrate on the most important thing – treating patients. And patients will have the confidence that they will receive their results quickly. This simple process can improve the health of whole communities.

It’s not just professional sample couriers who need reliable transport. Health care workers, AIDS counsellors, TB officers and grass-root carers operating in rural Africa all rely on transport to reach the communities they serve. In its more established programmes across Africa, Riders for Health is helping to mobilise hundreds of health workers and reach over 10 million people with the basic health care the developed world takes for granted.

The new series has been made with the help of the California-based Skoll Foundation. The Foundation currently supports over 60 organisations represented by remarkable social entrepreneurs. Social enterprise organisations, like Riders for Health, develop real-world solutions that can transform unequal and unjust social, environmental and economic systems.

To find out more about the work of Riders for Health visit their website at www.riders.org.

TAGS 2010

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