From walking to cycling: a quest for West Papua

Jeremy Bally is jumping on the Earth Week bandwagon and inviting others to join him before he pedals across our country for another one

Along the Earth Day theme, one Canadian is intending to cycle across the country in an effort to raise awareness for another.

Speaking of people who want to stretch their Good Samaritan legs, Jeremy Bally is jumping on the Earth Week bandwagon and inviting others to join him in a kick-off party before he hits the pavement to pedal across our country for another one.

“Pedalling for Papua” will see Bally launch from Mile Zero in Victoria on April 27, and land in St. John’s, Nfld. on Aug. 25. Between those dates, he’s looking to followers and friends to help sponsor his cause to raise awareness for a country that few Canadians know much about.

“West Papua has been under genocide conditions for about 50 years now, and Canadians are able to participate in making this corner of the world more peaceful,” says Bally, 24, who spent five weeks in the country last fall interviewing locals about their conditions and life stories. “For me, this is something I am able to do. The more who are aware, the better … These are powerful stories that need to be heard.”

Bally encourages all to donate to his group’s scholarship campaign that will offer Papuans English-language courses, or to contact local politicians to raise awareness. Bally is hosting his by-donation kick-off event on April 25, 7 to 9 p.m. at Alcheringa Gallery (665 Fort). More at pedalling.westpapua.ca. M

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