Asylum seekers in the UK are given about £36 a week for living expenses while their cases are being processed. Given the fact that they are not allowed to work and a weekly public transport pass costs £21, the refugees are living on just £2 per day. They need the mobility, because there are food and clothes available for asylum seekers in London, but these resources are spread around the whole city.
Jem Stein, a student of politics at the London School of Economics, learnt about the difficulties refugees face while volunteering as a mentor at a local help centre. He was helping a young asylum seeker from Darfur, who had to attend regular legal meetings, which increased his need for mobility even more. Stein decided to solve the problem in a creative manner.
“My brother gave me an old bike which I refurbished and gave to the asylum seeker I was mentoring, and I saw that it made a huge difference to his life,” the student told Al Jazeera.
From that moment, Stein started collecting old and rusty bicycles and turning them into working machines in his backyard. The interest in his work was huge so he quickly moved to a small workshop and launched “The Bike Project”. He plans to donate nearly 1,000 bicycles to refugees around London and was named the UK Social Entrepreneur of the Year by Lloyds Bank.
You can support his non-profit organisation HERE.