Tag Archives | Project Pari

Go the Distance

To celebrate International Women’s Day, and in support of Project Pari by Zonta Club of Singapore, we invite you to join us to run or walk a 2.4km route and collectively achieve a total distance of 50km or more within 3 hours!

The idea is to get active and at the same time create awareness about Project Pari and its mission – to inspire and enable young women from lower-income families to attain a positive outlook of the future and to become responsible contributors to society.

All you have to do is to turn up at Bishan Park 2 (Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park) to walk or run a loop of 2.4km. On an average, it takes about 15-20 mins to run-jog a 2.4km loop and about 30-45 mins to walk the same distance. To achieve a distance of 50km in 3 hours, we need collective effort.  We either have more than 20 participants to run a 2.4km distance (we hope the turn out is good), if fewer, some participants can help by going for more than one loop.

Our Target
We target to achieve a collective distance of 50km or more, in 3 hours (180mins). We invite you to appeal to your friends to support by making a small donation to Project Pari – donations of S$10, S$50, S$100 or any amount is welcome.

Project Pari supports less-privileged girls through their secondary school journey providing them with a monthly allowance, life skills course, fun activities and mentorship. It takes only $800 to support a Project Pari’s girl for 1 year. This $800 for 1 year can potentially help empower and enrich the girl’s future! We hope, through the support of this event’s participants and the public, we can raise the fund to support at least 1 girl for 1 year. Click here to DONATE

Your Motivation
By participating in this event, you get a chance to meet like-minded people who support healthy lifestyle and giving back to the community in a simple way. In light of the current Covid-19 situation, going outdoors to exercise is one of the best ways to keep healthy (therefore, if you are unwell on the event day, do stay home to rest).

Event Details
Date: Sat, 21 Mar 2020
Time: 8am – 11am (the event starts at 8am, you can come anytime to run, event will end at 11am)
Venue: Bishan Park 2 (the park that has McDonald’s and Aramsa Spa)
Meeting point: The Promenade between Carpark A and McDonald’s at Bishan St 25

Participation is free of charge. To sign up for the event, click here for the Registration Form. Please register by  Thu, 19 Mar 2020.

Who can participate:
To celebrate International Women’s Day, we invite all women and their families and friends to join in this mini challenge. This event is open to all gender, regardless of age – as long as one is medically fit to walk or run the 2.4km route. Bishan Park is wheel-chair and kids friendly.

We are also happy to share that outdoor retail shop Outside is sponsoring S$200 worth of product vouchers for the participants. S$100 voucher goes to the one who clocks the most loops in 3 hours, and S$50 vouchers will be given out to two lucky draw winners.

 

 

 

The running route map

Admin Support & Recording of Loops
The shelter at the Promenade is the main reporting station. At the shelter, we provide first aid kit. The toilet and water cooler is about 30m across. Please bring your own drinking water for your run/walk, you can leave your water bottle and other personal items (please pack them neatly in a bag, do not leave valuable items in there) at the shelter when you go for your run/walk.

Recording of Loops
Please report to the “Official” after you have completed each loop, and also when you plan to stop or leave the event location. There will be no number tags issued, recording will be based on your name given in the registration form above completed by you. The last loop to be completed before 10:59am.

What to Wear and Bring?

  1. Sports attire suitable for running / walking
  2. Running or walking shoes
  3. Drinking water
  4. Sunscreen
  5. Sun hat or cap
  6. Sunglasses (optional)
  7. Umbrella (optional)
  8. Towel / change of clothes (optional)
  9. Personal snacks (optional)

Note: Please have your breakfast before the activity


How to Get There

Getting there by public transport
Closest Bus Stops are:
1) B54089 – Opp AMK Swimming Complex – Buses 71, 133, 136, 262
2) B53381 and B53389 – Bishan St 22  (Bishan North Shopping Mall) – Buses 13, 52, 54, 88, 162, 410
Bishan MRT Station (NSL and Circle Line):
1) Exit A – cross overhead bridge to Bus Stop B53239 – Buses 13, 52, 54, 88
2) Exit D – Bus Interchange – Buses 52, 54 (longer route), 410 (White Plate)
3) Walk from MRT takes about 20-25mins

Getting there by Car/ Taxi
By Car:
1) Park at Carpark A on Ang Mo Kio Ave 1  OR
2) Park at HDB carpark Blk 241 Bishan St 22 (do not enter via St 25)

Bishan Park 2 – Location Map

 

 

 

 

Click here for the exact meet up location

 

 

For clarifications, please contact us via email at contact@aceadventure.com.sg  

We look forward to your participation!

To the roof of Africa and back

“So far the evidence that we have in the world points to Africa as the Cradle of Humankind.”
George Abungu, Director-General of the National Museums of Kenya.

It is in Africa that the oldest fossils of the early ancestors of humankind have been found, and it is the only continent that shows evidence of humans through the key stages of evolution. source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/africa/features/storyofafrica/index_section1.shtml

Mt Kili signboard

Africa is the world’s second largest continent; the largest continent is Asia. The highest point on Africa is the Uhuru Peak at 5,895m above sea level in Tanzania, also known as Mt Kilimanjaro, and widely acclaimed as the Roof of Africa! Mt Kilimanjaro is a popular peak – it is not only the highest peak in Africa, it is also one of the Seven Summits (the highest peak of each continent). It is with the aim to climb Mt Kilimanjaro that brought me, and five other female trekkers, to Africa. As a first timer visiting Africa, I am intrigued by the fact that I am visiting a continent where human life first began. While the continent is still prone to all ills of humanity, I believe that an open mind will lead me to experience a new Africa.

We flew in to Moshi where Kilimanjaro International Airport (KIA) is located. Before KIA opens more international flights to the world, tourists typically fly to Nairobi (Kenya) and take a 8hrs bus ride to Moshi. It is also possible to fly to Dar es Salaam (the largest city in Tanzania) and take a 7hrs bus ride to Moshi. As flying direct to Moshi is likely to be more expensive, tourists who want to save air flight cost can trade it with a bus ride (though I do not think it is a worthy trade off).

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Visit where the locals will visit!

We arrived in Moshi in the early afternoon after 2 transits covering an average of 12hrs flight time. Tanzania is about 5hrs behind Singapore time; 12pm in Tanzania will be about 5pm in Singapore. We spent the remaining day resting in the resort. The next day, we visited Moshi town, about 20mins drive from the resort. The supermarket in town is quite similar to those we have here in Singapore.

You can buy mineral water from the supermarket, it is definitely cheaper than to buy it from the resort where we stay. It is worth to change some Tanzanian Shilling (TZS) to make purchases in a local store. Some shops/restaurants accept US dollars but it will be based on their exchange rate which can be really high.

 

 

Team with names

Team members of the IWD Kilimanjaro Challenge

The following day, with much anticipation, we got ready to start our 8-days trek on Mt Kilimanjaro. We have prepared for the trek for almost six months, it was time to face the real challenge. We took the northern circuit which offered excellent views from all sides of the mountain, including the quiet, rarely visited northern slopes; a journey that covered 95km on foot, trekking from an elevation of 2,000m to 5,895m.

Londorossi Gate

Expedition support crew were getting ready to weigh their expedition loads in an orderly manner.

We arrived at the Londorossi Gate (2,250m) by vehicle. This is the place where we saw the support crew of various expedition groups gathered to sort out the logistics and distribution of loads. It was conducted very orderly, and impressively efficient. After another 15mins of drive, we arrived at the Lemosho Gate – we bid good-bye to our vehicle commander and were all ready to embrace the beauty of the African forest and the mythical of Mt Kilimanjaro.

Sign-in at camp site

Sign-in at camp site

The first day of our trek saw us trekking through the rain forest zone; on the second day, after an hour leaving the campsite, the trail led us to a lower alpine zone trekking in an average elevation of 3,000m above sea level. The slopes were gradual, and hardly any steep ascent.

After 3 days of trekking, we arrived at Moir Hut which is at an elevation of 4,200m. It was from here that we felt the thin air taking a toll on our body. We took a short acclimatization hike to 4,370m then return to Moir Hut to rest for the evening.

Our first "WOW" moment view of Mt Kilimanjaro from the lower alpine zone.

Our first “WOW” moment view of Mt Kilimanjaro from the lower alpine zone.

After leaving Moir Hut, we entered the northern circuit camping at Buffalo Camp (4,150m), and then moved on to Third Cave. Third Cave campsite is officially recorded at 3,800m, however, my altimeter read 4,050m. The air remained thin, we were careful not to exert unnecessarily.

The team arrived at Third Cave Camp in high spirit.

The team arrived at the Third Cave Camp in high spirit.

From Third Cave campsite, we trekked another 10km up the moraine slopes to School Hut at 4,800m. We were already experiencing breathlessness as we trek up the incline slopes; by then, we have moved on to a high alpine and glacier zone. We had already spotted Mawenzi Peak, standing proudly from a far distance to the south-east since the day we trekked to Baffalo Camp, it felt closer as we approached School Hut. Mawenzi Peak is the 3rd highest peak in Africa, Mt Kenya (Kenya) is the 2nd highest.

Mawenzi Peak (5149m), the 3rd highest peak in Africa.

School Hut Camp at 4800m.

School Hut Camp at 4800m.

We made our summit climb from the School Hut, leaving at about 12am after a light supper. The first 2 hours was a gradual slope, after about 4-5hrs, the climb became steeper as we approached Gilman’s Point (5,685m).  From Gilman’s Point, we trekked along the crater rim that led us to Stella Point (5,756m), and from Stella Point, it would be about an hour to reach the Uhuru Peak.

Gilman's Point at 5685m

Gilman’s Point at 5685m

Stella Point at 5756m.

Stella Point at 5756m.

Uhuru Peak – 5895m (Summit of Mt Kilimanjaro)

After our summit climb, we descent to Millennium Camp to rest. The following day, which was the 8th day of our trek, we descent to Mweka Gate. We ended our 8 days’ climb on Mt Kilimanjaro in high spirit but a tired body. In summary, the trek got tougher each day as we gained elevation and the thin air made breathing difficult on slopes causing each step heavier than the last. It was challenging for the everyone, especially so that all the other ladies were climbing beyond 4,000m for the first time.

Apart from the scenic environment around Mt Kilimanjaro, the support crew who supported us the whole time had made our climb memorable and certainly felt like a queen in African style.

The team at Millennium Camp before descending to Mweka Gate.

The team at Millennium Camp before descending to Mweka Gate.

Post Climb Thoughts

The climb to the summit is not as technically demanding as when climbing the peaks in the Himalayas or Andes; but the high elevation, low temperature, and the occasional high winds make climbing Mt Kilimanjaro a difficult and dangerous attempt. An itinerary cater for acclimatization is essential, even the most experienced trekkers may suffer some degree of altitude sickness. The highest point on Mt Kilimanjaro is at an altitude which may cause water retention in the lungs leading to high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE), or swelling of the brain – high altitude cerebral edema (HACE).  All trekkers will suffer considerable discomfort, typically shortage of breath, hypothermia, and headaches.

On my journey to the top plodding at an elevation between 5,700m and 5,800m – an elevation that is not new to me – my heart was working laboriously. Very often when we focus so much on keeping a pace, we often neglect that we may be pushing ourselves harder than necessary. It strike me that I am not immune to any high altitude risk, I too may be susceptible to a sudden cardiac arrest at high altitude. I began to slow down my pace; giving my heart a break, focusing on exhalation to slow down my heart rate.

Sammi Teh

Sammi Teh

Sammi who has only been up to 3,200m before climbing Mt Kilimanjaro was hit by altitude sickness that caused her to sink into fatigue earlier than expected. She recounted her thoughts on trekking above 5,000m for the first time. “I felt helpless, confused and kept questioning if there is any limit to the power of ‘mind over body‘ at that elevation; I knew that my body was tired, yet my mind remain determined.”

Liyana Low

Liyana Low (photo credit: Liyana Low)

The youngest among us is Liyana, and being young did not make her climb any less strenuous. She said “I was tired from the lack of oxygen – every step grew heavier. But each step I took was one step closer to the top, and that was what kept me going. Celebrating my 27th birthday at the top was the icing on the cake!”

Dominique Low

Dominique Low

Dominique caught a flu and had fever the day when we trekked to Buffalo Camp. She managed to recover a little after taking a cocktail of medicines like anti-histamine, Panadol. She weren’t ready to give up yet. She recalled the midnight summit push that we took on a full-moon night “At 5,000m, you feel the biting cold in your bones. Your fingers and toes are numb. Breathing is difficult, you are drowsy, your eyes are half-closed. Each step takes a huge effort and muscle in your body tells you to stop. Then you hear a voice – one step at a time, if your mind is willing, your body will adapt – I stop to blow my nose, drink more water, take a deep breath then keep on walking.”

Veronica Lim

Veronica Lim

Talking about cold, Veronica has it all ready to battle it. From thermal base layer to down jacket to goretex outer-shell, she knew exactly how to keep her body warm with the gear she brought with her. That was not all, her mental strength was crucial in helping her to stay focus despite the cold and the seemingly endless ascent in the dark. She said “I told myself to think happy thoughts and keep going.”

Julia Chua

Julia Chua

Each of us have different threshold to cold, and Julia is probably the one who has a higher threshold to cold among us. She would stroll around the campsite while most of us stayed in our tents. A highly positive trekker, she shared about her experience on the summit day. “At the beginning, I spent most of the climb looking at the moon. I thanked God for its light, its watchful presence over us. I liked the way it traced the outline of the terrain. As it got higher, music started to play in my head. From songs on the radio i heard a few days ago to the cheers of Swahili that we sang at camps, to which I’m sure i got every word wrong. When we have gone beyond the 5,000m mark, there was silence. No one spoke to each other for a long time. I didn’t know how long it was going to take for us to reach Gilman’s point or even to the summit, and at that point i was afraid to ask. How long are we going to stay on this side of the mountain? And then the sun came up, changing shifts with the moon, painting the rocks with gold. At that moment, a quote popped into my head, like my brain was trying to comfort my body. It goes

“I just want you to know, 
That i would like you to stay.
No matter how hard this day gets on this mountain,
It’s okay. It’s okay…”

The Purpose of our climb to the Roof Of Africa

Trekking at high elevation is tough. We are not there to suffer, but to challenge personal limit, and to create an awareness to help the less fortunate.  Life is meant to make beautiful and happier. If you wish to help a low-income family teenage girl’s life slightly better, you can help by making a cash donation.

Your donation will help secondary school girls to have proper meals and for transportation. Life skill programmes are conducted to help instill in the teenagers a sense of self-worth and to learn skills such as personal hygiene and financial management.

We are supporting Project Pari in a small way – by undertaking a journey to scale Mt Kilimanjaro. Through our climb, we hope to create an awareness to all women, specially Singapore women, to get out of the traditional view that women are fragile physically and psychologically. Women can live our dreams, and we can help others live their dreams too. If you are reading this, do join us to support the efforts of Project Pari.

How to Donate?

Donation can be made online to: “Donate to Programme” , “Ace Adventure IWD Challenge 2015 for Project Pari” at this SGGives website link: https://www.sggives.org/SGGives_P_CharityDetails.aspx…

For more information on Project Pari: www.zonta-singapore.org/service-projects.html

Please send in your donation before 31 March 2015. Asante Sana! (Thank you very much).

And I shall end off with a Swahili phase:

Hakuna Matata!

It means Don’t Worry, Be Happy!

Joanne Soo
Expedition Leader
IWD Kilimajaro Challenge 2015

Climb Mt Kilimanjaro for a Good Cause

Mountain climbing, trekking and supporting good causes are all things close to our hearts. Hence, we have set ourselves the goal to create events that use mountain climbing and trekking as a platform to not only encourage more people to challenge themselves but also to promote good causes.

The idea to organize an all-women team to climb Kilimanjaro for a good cause and to celebrate International Women’s Day was mooted in 2013. We sent the first team in March 2014. A year on, we are not only intending to continue to organize an all-women team to climb Kilimanjaro annually during International Women’s Day but have also added a trekking challenge to The Great Rift Valley in Tanzania !

Through the IWD Challenge , we hope more women will be inspired to challenge themselves and great awareness can be generated for women’s needs.

The Ace Adventure IWD Challenge 2015 will be raising funds for Project Pari.

More information on Project Pari can be found here:
http://www.zonta-singapore.org/service-projects.html

To help you find out more about what the IWD Challenge is all about, we are organising a preview talk on Fri, 11 July at SCWO at 7pm. RSVP for the talk at contact@aceadventure.com.sg

IWD 2015 Preview Talk

 

 My Story, My Journal

This is a personal sharing by Ms Indumathi Emmanuel Alexandra who took part in the IWD Kilimanjaro Challenge 2013.

When I first heard that Ace Adventure was organising this expedition to Kilimanjaro in conjunction with commemorating International Women’s Day and in addition to that, trying to give back to society and young women in particular, I wanted to be a part of it, how could I not, when they were bringing together things that were important to me.

Ms Indu on the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro

Ms Indu on the summit of Mt Kilimanjaro

So, I went to the initial trip briefing and as I walked in to the SCWO building, I remember Vinnie at the reception desk saying to Joanne and Jack that I was her friend and that I was there to sign up. And despite all of this, it took me weeks to commit to it. It took a minor flooding incident in my office building causing us to have to walk up six floors and me panting and perspiring at the end (I still blame the high-heeled shoes) to convince me that all work and no physical challenges was not doing me any good.

I always say that I’m just a social climber. I climb maybe one significant peak or height every two or so years. I do the training and try to get physically ready for the trek but there is always the unknown of your body not acclimatising, the unexpected occurring or maybe you just didn’t train hard enough.

For me, these doubts then manifest themselves as we drive toward the mountain to start the trek and I get more and more nervous. You see the mountain getting bigger, becoming more real and even taller as you approach and I start to think how on earth am I going to manage this. But here’s what I love about this, you don’t need to be extraordinary to do it, you take it slow, resolve to keep putting one foot in front of the other and eventually (admittedly at times, this take a while), you will get to the next camp site.

On the first few days, it must’ve been on average five to six hours of trekking each day. We took the longer Northern Circuit route, 9 days, but it made such a big difference for me. It is a very scenic route with the changing terrain, landscape and vegetation as you move higher. As we had more days too, the daily ascent was more gradual thus allowing for better acclimatisation as well.

The day before the summit climb and of course, the summit climb day were longer and harder days. We must’ve been close to 5000m when we started on the day before the summit climb. The weather toward late morning took a turn for the worse, it rained fairly hard with strong winds and it was cold. But the weather eased and sun re-emerged in the afternoon as we reached School Hut.

We took about seven hours to get to the summit. We started rather late in the morning and thus, we only reached the summit around 4pm. By the time we reached Gilman’s Point, I didn’t think we’d make it to Uhuru. It was getting dark and I was frankly tired. However, our guides and Vinnie seemed ever ready to push on and so I reluctantly just kept moving. Another surprise was that it started to snow, the unexpected occuring. In spite of my pessimism, we passed Stella Point before finally arriving at Uhuru.

All those days of climbing and we stayed at the summit for not more than ten minutes. The falling snow was quickly gaining momentum and shortly after starting our way to the camp site, the snow had blocked our visibility and we seemed to be in what seemed to be, a small snow storm. It was scary not being able to see past a few meters. But our guides, as they always are, were there to lead us safely and confidently to our camp site.

I can’t articulate that sense of satisfaction and gladness you feel within yourself when you’ve done something you didn’t think or doubted you could do. But I think you’ll know the feeling when it’s done, or at the very least, challenged yourself to discover something you didn’t know you had in you to do.

Nonetheless, I think the best part of any trek in my view is meeting the people. Everywhere I’ve been on treks, the people we meet and support us have been so kind and gracious. Our guides and support crew were very professional and thoughtful. They saw to all our needs throughout the trek. Every time we reached the camp site, our tents were ready and they’d have a snack or meal ready for us. In the mornings, we’d be given a hot drink, water for washing and fed well before starting our day. Without them, we wouldn’t have gotten anywhere.

 

???????????????????????????????It’s in this spirit of humanity that I feel encouraged and kind of proud to be involved in the IWD Kilimanjaro expeditions organised by Ace Adventure. I don’t think I do enough to support other women. So, to see women pull together and try to help other women and to feel that I’m part of it in a small way, warms my heart and makes me happy to be part of this human race.