News and Opinions  –  2023

ReAct Latin America: Cycling as community engagement

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On April 2, around 300 people of all ages cycled 14 kilometers along the bicycle paths adjacent to the main rivers in the south of the city of Cuenca, Ecuador, for World Tuberculosis Day.

Children and grown ups biked together during the day in Cuenca, Ecuador Photo: ReAct Latin America.

“Tuberculosis Cycle Adventure”  is a campaign to raise awareness about the proper use of antibiotics, as well as the importance of air quality in the prevention and treatment of tuberculosis.

Local health authorities, cycling sports clubs, civil society organizations, medical students, teachers, as well as boys, girls, their parents and entire families, joined the cycle adventure.

Clean air for respiratory health

Many people with bikes standing on a cycle path, trees and grass around them.
Around 300 people biked together. Photo: ReAct Latin America.

It was a recreational day with participants who enthusiastically pedaled in the community under the slogan “air quality matters” – a powerful message to highlight the importance of clean air for respiratory health and prevention of diseases such as tuberculosis.

The day was coordinated by ReAct Latin America whose core work is to engage the community, and arranged together with local authorities – the Cuenca Cantonal Health Council and organizations such as Respira Ec.

Handed out informative materials

Woman and man with bicycle helmets on looking at a stand with informative material and people helping them
A smaller square with information and snacks was set up for the bike riders and other persons that wanted to learn more. Photo: ReAct Latin America.

Informative materials were handed out to the public about prevention and treatment of tuberculosis. The information highlighted that air pollution combined with self-medication and antibiotic resistance have a negative impact on the treatment of this respiratory disease.

The day also focused on promoting physical activity, community participation, mutual support among citizens, solidarity in families as well as cooperation between different organizations. The event also encouraged the use of bicycles as a method of transportation which would reduce air pollution in the city.

For a better city and better health

Bike riders cycling one after the other.
The bike adventure was arranged for a better city and better health. Photo: ReAct Latin America

Jaime López Novillo, representative of the cycling collective BiciCuenca, pointed out that it is necessary for institutions to implement public policies that guarantee the right of citizens to breathe clean air and build a sustainable city, and added “citizens are the main actors that energize positive and cooperative actions for a better city and better health”.

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