Milward's
Millennium Motorcycle Ride

Press Release
08 Julyl 2003

Mototurismo Ecuador takes responsibility for health ministry motorbikes

A group of Ecuadorian motorcyclists will buy and manage five motorcycles for the Health Ministry. Mototurismo Ecuador, well known for a range of motorcycle activities including lobbying on rights issues and staging events, adopted the initiative after the Nutrician section of the Health Ministry showed interest in this ‘new approach’.

Ricardo Rocco, currently on the North American leg of his Around For Peace world tour www.andesmoto-tours.com said, “As an organization we were looking for a social cause to support. So when Simon’s activities showed a serious need, a lot of interest and an intrinsic motorcycle angle, it was perfect.”

The motorcycles will be used in the indigenous Indian area of Chibuleo in the Province of Tungurahua, about 200km south of Quito and 3,500m up in the Andean Sierras. The 12,000 population in seven communities is a priority area of the Health Ministry. Several other new health initiatives are already underway.

Simon Milward, emailing from Guayaquil in the SW of Ecuador, said, “We go from widespread use of motorcycles in health delivery in Colombia and all the countries further north to hardly at all in Ecuador. We offer innovation. We’re avoiding the classic and widespread mistake of providing vehicles without training nor maintenance support: we will have it in place before the bikes arrive. We are discussing prices with suppliers, sponsors may have the chance to get their name permanently on the high profile motorcycles.”

Meanwhile the National Health Chief, Dr Oswaldo Rios, is ordering a national investigation to determine how many motorcycles are needed throughout the country. In this case the organizers will send a candidate for training at Riders for Health’s academy in Zimbabwe Africa and accept international funding.

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