Team Africa Rising’s believes in giving women the same opportunities as men in the sport of cycling. Frankly, it’s an uphill battle that we are willing and prepared to wage for the women of Africa #TheseGirlsRide
Building a culture of women’s cycling in Africa comes with a whole new set of challenges. However, the more significant the trial the, higher the rewards and impact for these women, their families and the sport. The passion we witness amongst these young women is fierce. They will go to great lengths to defy cultural expectations and rewrite the rules of cycling for women in their communities. Challenges include lack of access, cultural expectations around marriage and children, lack of education and lack of training and racing opportunities. None of these challenges deter the women of Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Botswana, South Africa, Algeria, and Egypt. The task for Team Africa Rising is to be the voice of these women at the highest levels of the sport. TAR advocates for these women and their countries with the UCI and is continuously involved in bringing training and racing opportunities to the women.
“Women: When we team up, we are incredibly powerful. Find someone to team up with….our voices collectively really do make a difference, and change and perspective is worth fighting for.” — Donna Orender
“We need to have women in more powerful positions that are making decisions, so when that 10-year-old girl is looking up and wondering, ‘What can I do and What do I want to be when I get older?’ She has the opportunity to do and be whatever she wants.” — Abby Wambach
Meet the Women of African Cycling
Eyerusalem Kelil (Cyclist) — Ethiopia
Eyerusalem Kelil is the only black African women to race for a professional team in Europe. She raced for SC Fanini and last year, Be Pink. She is currently looking for a team for the 2019 season.
Sandrine Uwineza was a cyclist in Rwanda. She realized early on she would never be a top level competitive cyclist so turned her attention to mechanics. Sandrine is the only black African women to wrench for a UCI Continental Team, Team Illuminate, at the 2018 Tour of Rwanda.
Our goal is to not only train female cyclists, but all the support staff positions within the sport should include women.
Eyeru Gebru is the only black African women to hold a jersey in a professional race. In 2018, Tour Cycliste Féminin International de l’Ardèche (2.1), Eyeru won the Most Combative jersey and finished 5th in the Queen of the Mountain.
Eyeru trained multiple times at the Africa Rising Cycling Center in Rwanda and at the World Cycling Center South Africa. She competed in the UCI World Championships in Austria and was on the winning Time Trial Team for Ethiopia at the 2018 African Continental Championships.
Bisrat, at only 20 years of age is one of the top up and coming cyclists on the Continent. She is the current reigning African Continental Road Champion and is also a strong time trialist.
Watch this young woman March 14-19th at the 2019 African Continental Road Cycling Championships in Bahar Dar, Ethiopia.
You can find more info on your Pro Cycling Stats page.
HOW TO SUPPORT AFRICAN WOMEN’S CYCLING
Women’s cycling is facing an uphill battle in Africa, a battle only we can fight! These women need access to equipment, training, coaching, and racing. Currently, the only consistent racing with UCI points is in South Africa. We need to get these women to South Africa or to Europe or the US to gauge their abilities and grow the much-needed experience.
To help these women be successful Team Africa Rising assists with finding teams outside Africa to place these women. We also secure guest ride slots for various races. TAR supports their training camps in South Africa and Rwanda. The majority of funds go to flights and equipment for these women to gain the experience they need.
Start Your Own Fundraiser
Start your Fundraiser to Raise Money to give these women the opportunity to show the cycling world African women’s cycling is the REAL Deal. Gather up your girlfriends and rally around these women or support an individual women’s path. It’s all up to you!