AJ+  recently traveled to Ghana to meet Bernice Dapaah, a young entrepreneur who is using innovation and eco-friendly practices to make a lasting impact on her community.

In 2010, Bernice was preparing to graduate from the Christian Service University College, with a degree in Business Administration. Leading up to the ceremony, she wondered how she could use her education to improve her business.

Image: Flickr

Bernice grows the bamboo in her hometown of Kumasi and transforms the raw materials into bike frames. In an interview with AJ+, she speaks about how her grandfather instilled in her “the spirit of doing something on your own” from a young age.

When creating The Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative, the entrepreneur envisioned a company that would not only be eco-friendly but also make a lasting social impact on her community.

For every bamboo plant her team cuts down, they plant ten more and if the community uses her bikes, they can reduce carbon emissions by up to 70 percent.

But wait, she’s not done there! To give back to her community, Bernice donates her bikes to kids at the local school in Kumasi, so their daily commute can be made easier.

All of her amazing initiatives have earned international recognition.  She’s now selling her bikes all over the world including in Europe, Israel, and the United States.

Bernice Dapaah may not be a Congresswoman or a billionaire from a Fortune-500 company, but she is using innovation to address climate change, poverty, rural-urban travel, and youth employment within her community.

Those are some incredible results. Imagine if there were Bernice’s in every community around the world?

Ultimately, her work is a reminder that being a global citizen does not always mean looking abroad. It can mean making a difference right in your own backyard.

You can click here to visit the website of the Ghana Bamboo Bikes Initiative if you want to learn more. 


Defeat Poverty

Find out how Ghana is growing its own bikes

By Miquel-Caitlyn Gabbidon