It took a lifelong cyclist working in international development to come up with the idea. Keith Oberg founded Bikes for the World in 2005 and since then the group has collected and shipped nearly 90,000 bicycles to low-income residents in 12 developing countries and the US. With the help of churches, synagogues, high schools, scout troops, and others, Bikes for the World collects unwanted bicycles that are gathering dust in garages and basements or taking up space in landfills, and distributes them in places where a used bike has the power to transform a life -- to transport rural school children to schools far from home, enable public health workers to travel much faster than by foot (and thus see more patients), and help small business people get their wares to market. The costs are offset by bike donors who are encouraged to make a modest contribution, and overseas partners who pay for the shipping. Your contribution gives new life to these wheels and the people who ride them.

Headquarters: VA-Arlington County

Where They Operate: DC-Citywide; MD-Statewide; VA-Statewide; Barbados; Costa Rica; El Salvador; Ghana; Guatemala; Honduras; Kenya; Mozambique; Namibia; Panama; Philippines; Sierra Leone; South Africa; Uganda

Age Groups Served: Youth (5-11); Pre-teen/teen (12-17); Young adult (18-24); Adult (25-49); Seniors (50+); All

Population(s) Served: Disabled; Low- to Moderate-Income Community Members; Men/Boys; Women/Girls; Students

Awards & Recognition



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Budget (FY2013)

  • $3 million or higher
  • The current budget for Bikes for the World is: $1 million to $3 million
  • $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About the Catalogue for Philanthropy

Each year 120 expert reviewers evaluate applicants for distinction, merit, and impact. Each featured charity has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. The Catalogue for Philanthropy charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $40 million for charities across the Greater Washington region.

The Catalogue for Philanthropy looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to the Catalogue to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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