We have shared many stories of young people who inspire with their ideas and their efforts to help others in need, a quick search of this website will show you children of all ages who have done big things for their or other communities. But how long do these efforts last? Well at least one lad has continued his efforts well into adulthood.
When Winston Duncan was 10 years old he saw people in Africa who had to walk very long distances; he was particularly inspired an elderly lady and a young boy he saw in southern Africa and was reminded of his own grandmother who had to travel with an oxygen tank. He wanted to help, his solution? Bikes. And so he began collecting bikes in his home area, Washington, and sending them around the world to people in need.
Duncan is 24 now and 8,000 bikes later he is still doing his work to help those who have long distances to travel and no easy way to get there. Most of the bikes have ended up in Africa to help students and others cut down on hours of travel, but last week, Duncan and his mother, Dixie Duncan, traveled with a handful of volunteers and 400 bikes to a destination much closer to home yet still in dire need: Puerto Rico. More than a year after it was devastated by Hurricane Maria, the island suffers from infrastructure and transportation problems, said Dixie Duncan. “They’re American citizens, and I personally felt like we need to do what we can to help.”
Duncan, has grown up and recently graduated from Bard College and is in Arlington working at a political consulting firm. But he still knows why he needs to keep doing the work he started all those years ago; recalling his initial trip to Africa, he said, “I was just astounded to see the poverty because I’d never seen anything like that. Meeting a kid with holes in his shoes, who had walked four to five miles to get to school, it made me realize how much they appreciate education.” He now encourages kids in the Washington area to get involved with the organization, and some have joined him on trips to Africa and on this trip to Puerto Rico. “I wanted to try to get kids in this area to see how privileged we are and to try to get people to think about giving back,” he said.
It is a lesson that many who live on North America could use, a better understanding of how well they have it, even compared to many who live in the same Country as they do. There is quite a bit more to Winston’s story and you can read about it in your Good News Story of the Day here.
Story and Image from The Washington Post.