Visiting Farah, Our Orang Asli Trainee's Home During The Unity Ride

profile image Projek57 Malaysia 07 Sep 2017

After conducting the Unity workshop at Sekolah Menengah Sains Dungun, the Unity Ride team travelled to Kuantan. We passed by beautiful and pristine beaches along the way. It was a sunny day, we were able to appreciate how gorgeous our coastlines are. The smell of the sea water, the windy breeze, and occasionally we would spot a coconut tree or two.

Apart from engaging youths, the Unity Ride brought out the beauty of Malaysia for us. We discovered hidden gems, every leg that we cycled through had a different scenic background or history.

1st leg was from historical Dataran Merdeka to our new administration, Putrajaya. The 2nd leg was through mining town, Kampar. 3rd leg through Penang, rich in heritage into Sungai Petani lush with paddy fields. 4th leg through the scenic idyllic coastlines of Dungun. For this 5th leg, the visit to Farah's family started with gorgeous coastlines then deep into the oil palm plantations. 

Our subsequent 6th leg started in quaint kampung Kota Tinggi into a new township Nusajaya, and the 7th leg commenced in historic Melaka through Negeri Sembilan and ending up in Sungai Long. 

We had the opportunity to not only meet many different wonderful people, but also the privilege of cycling through many different beautiful and interesting places! 

The 5th leg is a special stopover as the Unity Ride team visited the family of Farah who is one of our trainees. Collin, Sadiq and the Unity Ride crew were greeted with a warm welcome by En. Baharum, his wife and their 4 children (Farah is a middle child).

Their village is located at Kampung Pasal, which lies deep within the palm oil plantation. This is a very secluded area as the village can't be detected by Waze or Google Maps. Kampung Pasal is a small village whereby there are only 40 occupants!

En. Baharum is a rubber tapper and his wife helps him out at their rubber farm within Kampung Pasal. Due to the lack of education, he could not speak English. However, he communicated with Collin, Sadiq and the Unity Ride crew in perfect Bahasa Malaysia.

Sadiq and Collin chit-chatted with En. Baharum, they asked him what are his hopes and dreams. As every father's wish, he wanted a better education for his children so they may speak English and enjoy the opportunities which he never had. That was the reason he had sent 3 of his oldest children, including Farah to Kuala Lumpur to learn and study English at SOLS 24/7. SOLS 24/7 is an award-winning humanitarian organization, committed to serve, educate and empower poor and underserved communities including the Orang Asli. We partner with them to help Orang Asli youths come out of their comfort zone through retail training, help to improve their communication skills and build confidence in them.

We are extremely encouraged by En. Baharum's vision for all his children and we hope his dreams may come true.

This is Farah's story.

"My family has been living in Kampung Pasal since last year because my mother was sick and we had problems with our old place. So my father decided to move from Johor to Pahang. 

My father works as a rubber tapper in his own rubber farm. Every day from 8am to 11am, he'll go to toreh getah (tap rubber). My mother helps my father on a daily basis.

I don't really remember my childhood because we moved from one place to another many time. I also don't even remember about me going to school, only remembered that I finished my kindergarten.

Cities and kampung are very different. Kampung is near the jungle and the river. It's much peaceful (in the village). I like the food in the kampung. But I don't like people in the kampung who tend to sell their own land.

About the city pula, it's more happening. We can gather a lot of experiences, go to new places. But there are too many cars.

Projek57 has helped me to be more confident, and able to speak up. Be braver. Most importantly there is always hope in everything. Unity Ride is very good, to know what people think and feel about hope and unity for Malaysia.Travelling around Malaysia with Unity Ride enables me to get close to people and also to open their mind to be more aware of the importance of unity in Malaysia."