Claire ElsdonFounder Pikilily – Women keep Africa’s motors running
Women keep Africa’s motors running
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
It was this Mark Twain quote that made Claire Elsdon decide to quit her job as a stockbroker in the city and follow her dream: a solo motorcycle trip from London to Cape Town. Her grandmother telling her that she regretted not having been braver to do the things she had wanted to do in life gave her the final push.
Elsdon observed how educating riders about motorcycle maintenance could help local communities, keep vital projects running, and potentially save lives.
In April 2016, Elsdon moved to Tanzania to set up Pikilily, Africa's first women's motorcycle maintenance workshop. Apart from preventing motorcycle crashes, motorcycle maintenance skills enable midwives to drive out to remote areas for childbirth assistance. This is crucial in a country where pregnancy-related deaths are all too common.