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Mon Community Clinic Fundraising Cycling Trip

Why Journey?

It’s the time of the year when our founder, Trecia, goes on her annual fundraising cycling trip and we hope you can show your support!

This year, Trecia cycled from Penang to Singapore over a period of 9 days, from 26 August to 3 September 2023, covering a distance of 840 km.

This time round, she’s cycled with the hope of raising funds to help complete the construction of a community clinic for refugees and migrant families living in the Thai and Karen-Mon-Burmese villages.

The progress of construction of the clinic was initially going along steadily, occasionally disrupted by prevailing seasonal weather patterns, but everything came to a standstill when the pandemic hit.

3 years have passed and there is now an urgent need in the village for a new clinic that can serve the growing medical needs of the 1350-strong village population, a good portion of which are young children.

Mon Villagers going about their daily life

The previous clinic, a wooden structure built more than 20 years ago, was in an unsafe condition, as the soil around the foundation of the structure has been greatly eroded.

The hydro-powered electricity generator it has is no longer serviceable, and as a result, there is no electricity to power a fridge to keep these vaccines and other medicines cool.

The lack of proper medical storage facilities is a serious healthcare risk!

The villagers, via the Mon National Health Committee (MNHC), have reached out to WeCreate Studio for assistance, and hence Trecia has decided to make the Mon Community Clinic as the main beneficiary of her fundraising trip.

Trecia has since overcome the challenges placed in her way and successfully completed her cycling trip!

For those who wish to support Trecia and the Mon Community Clinic, you can click on the link below:

Let’s now retrace the steps and tracks Trecia took for her trip!

August 26: Day 1

Nibong Tebal @Penang - Bagan Serai @Perak, 15km

Landed in Penang Airport and took an hour Grab trip to Nibong Tebal across the Penang Bridge, which does not allow bicycles.

Met up with Manjit Singh Randhawa, Michael Ong, and TC, who were waiting out a thunderstorm.

Meeting up with fellow cycling kakis for the fundraising trip

Set up the bike and got rolling after a yummy Nasi Padang.

Trecia all set to rock and roll

Unfortunately, I experienced some front derailleur issues and was unable to change gear.

A WhatsApp exchange with SK from Green Basikal ensued for almost 2 hours, trying to follow instructions to diagnose the issue.

Front derailleur issue diagnosed to be a shifter issue

He was so amazingly patient with me, and we finally concluded that it was a shifter issue.

I’ll only be rolling with the rear gears tomorrow until we can find a bike shop then…

August 27: Day 2

Bagan Serai @Perak - Pantai Remis @Perak, 78km

It was an extremely hot day ride, cycling for almost 4 hours in the sun with a 2-hour lunch break to escape the midday sun.

The heat took a toll on me, giving me a headache at the end of the day.

But all was good in the end after a good night's sleep.

Cycling along with Michael Ong, who’s also doing his own fundraising for Ground-Up Initiative (GUI) for #GUIsBigMove.

You can find out more about supporting his ride here:

Shoutout to Michael's fundraising initiative for GUI's big move

TC is also raising funds for @Ride for Rations, a charitable cause that provides monthly rations to the lower income needy families in Singapore.

August 28: Day 3

Pantai Remis @Perak - Teluk Intan @Perak, 102km

Beautiful morning start to the temple by the village and short, small roads ride, at Sitiawan.

Picturesque view along the way

After the first 20km, we were stuck on the major road all the way.

Luckily, we had tail wind and the clouds to sweep us along for the last 20km of the ride for the day.

Paying our respects to the idol statues at the temple under a beautiful sky

‘Wefie’ moment beneath the pagoda

I managed to get my front derailleur fixed up too by a local mechanic after the diagnosis session with SK.

Thumbs up to the local mechanic for fixing the front derailleur

August 29: Day 4

Teluk Intan @Perak - Kuala Selangor @Selangor, 98km

With Ang Yeok Wee and Ler Hwee Beng joining forces with their foldable bikes, we now have 6 people rolling together passing towns and states together.

I reckon the average age of the group is probably around 60 years young, but all still full of power, pushing our bodies to finish the ride with each other's company even though we were dead tired and burnt from the sun.

Sekinchan, with its many beautiful paddy fields, reminded me of Hualian @Taiwan a little. It’s definitely a great place for a chilled bicycle ride.

August 30: Day 5

Kuala Selangor @Selangor - Banting @Selangor, 84km

We decided to ‘chiong’ all the way with minimal rest to Banting today amidst the very heavy traffic along route 5, to meet up with Khun Mii Mongkol Vijarana, who amazingly travelled all the way from Bangkok to KL and cycled to Banting to meet us, and that’s after he cycled 1200 km through the French mountains in 89 hours just a couple days back…

More cycling to come amidst the local holiday season…

Meanwhile at the Mon Clinic, Dada Rama has been trying to make use of the few months of dry season to complete as much of the clinic as possible.

He has been personally buying and delivering the construction materials on his own, to save on the delivery cost.

Construction of Mon Clinic in progress

Now the wet season has kicked in, and it's impossible to cross the rivers to continue the works. The rest of the works will have to be continued when the dry season comes back again at the end of December.

August 31: Day 6

Banting @Selangor - Port Dickson @Negeri Sembilan, 83km

Today is Malaysia’s National Day.

Soaking in Malaysia's National Day atmosphere after a yummy meal

The beach was full of tents and families with cars, and cyclists too!

Chilling from the heat

We were constantly waved at with a shout of 'Merdeka!' from across the road.

We also had good fun riding around the neighbourhood of Port Dickson, looking to take a ferry trip (< 5 mins) across Sungei Sepang, to cross from Selangor state to the Negeri Sembilan state.

Having fun with a victorious group pose at Port Dickson

It's such a local ride, operated by an old uncle just moving back and forth between the banks, mostly catering to motorcyclists looking to cut short their journey by avoiding the need to pass through Sepang.

September 1: Day 7

Port Dickson @Negeri Sembilan - Malacca, 82km

A day of rolling hills and I’m totally loving it. The roads seem to be increasingly crowded as we head towards the south of Malaysia, and we noticed less fruits stalls on the streets too, for some reason, until we reached Malacca.

Today is also the day in which we were joining up with our friends who are cycling in support of the Ride for Rations 2023 fundraising ride. They’ll be cycling from Malacca back to Singapore to raise funds that’ll help fund the purchase of food rations for the lower income families in Singapore.

Many of them were jumping onto coaches and cars to Malaysia right after casting their votes for the Singapore Presidential Election.

I was so happy to see Sho Eb hanging around on the streets the first thing we got into the city.

Meeting Sho Eb and having a meal together before setting off once again

It was great to see many other familiar faces again.

September 2: Day 8

Malacca - Batu Pahat @Johor, 100km

After a week of daily riding, I can really feel a change in my body. I feel so much fitter and was able to sleep so well.

Regular exercise is truly a good medicine. Everyone seems to be riding faster too.

We were rolling at an average of 21km/hr, which is pretty good, given the load on the bike.

Finally managed to check out Muar city for the first time, not having done so despite passing by this city so many times over the years. I had a great time exploring beautiful murals around the old city.

Beautiful wall murals in Muar

And the amazing George Kee also managed to kind of solve the mysterious issue of the back wheel constantly coming off the frame, which is really dangerous if it happens during a bump while cycling.

September 3: Day 9

Batu Pahat @Johor - Singapore, 143km

Today marks the last day of the fundraising ride.

The last sprint back home!

I’m very glad to get the support from friends who were also riding back to Singapore for the Ride for Rations fundraising events.

Great company from Ride for Rations kakis during the last sprint back home

Almost 12 hours on the road riding over rolling hills, really pushing most of our physical limits under the hot sun but it’s all worth it!

Feeling physically exhausted yet mentally energised

Overall, it has been a physically challenging but mentally recharging week.

We Welcome Your Donations

And that is it for our recount of Trecia’s trip!

We hope you enjoyed reading her daily personal reflections as much as we did.

Savouring moments from the trip till the next

Trecia will be updating her followers on the status of the fundraising efforts soon once she settles down.

We would like to appeal on her behalf for more donations to help complete the clinic for the Mon Community.

No effort is too small.

To donate, please click on the link below to support Trecia’s campaign!

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