Brenda Trenholme cycled 13,000 km along the Silk Route from China to Istanbul in 2018 to raise money for the Kenya Education Endowment Fund (KEEF). She will give a presentation about her trip in Parksville on Feb. 8. - Submitted photo

Cyclist who rode Silk Route presents on trip and fundraiser at MAC

Brenda Trenholme hopes to raise funds to help Kenyan youth attend school

A cyclist who travelled 13,000 kilometres along the Silk Route from China to Istanbul is coming to Parksville to present her journey through stories and photos and will speak about the fundraising initiative that was at the heart of her trip.

Brenda Trenholme, from Rossland B.C., will be at the McMillan Arts Centre (133 McMillan St.) on Friday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. with hopes of raising money for the Kenya Education Endowment Fund (KEEF).

Trenholme has been involved with KEEF, a small Canadian charity, for several years and says the organization helps Kenyan youth attend high school, which is not free in Kenya.

“The reason I feel strongly about this particular program, is number one…every penny that’s donated goes tot he kids and number two, it’s a hand-up not a handout. It helps the kids get themselves out of poverty,” Trenholme said.

Trenholme, a retired doctor, said she’s done volunteer medical work in Africa and that it wasn’t hard to miss the profound need from people without an education.

“It was astonishing and shocking to see the difference between the people who had a bit of education, they could take care of themselves and the people who hadn’t, they just couldn’t navigate the system themselves so I feel education is really key to making a dent in world poverty,” she said.

KEEF, Trenholme said, supports about 139 students and most of the people working for the charity are based on Vancouver Island.

With a goal to raise $20,000 for KEEF, Trenholme will present a slideshow and stories of struggle, beauty and accomplishment from her five-month cycling trip that began in Beijing, China.

Trenholme joined the Canadian-based tour agency, TDA, who supply the cyclists with a support vehicle, a doctor, mechanic and food in order to complete the trip safely.

“The cyclists supply the energy, all their own equipment and the enthusiasm,” Trenholme said. “We travelled for 150 days from Beijing to Istanbul.”

Trenholme said the cyclists would camp by the side of the road or off the beaten path and would get one day off each week.

“I guess the thing that is most striking about the first half of this tour is we were in such remote places that most tourists would never get to see, and seeing it from a bicycle you really get an intimate view,” she said.

The trip’s biggest struggle, Trenholme said, came when the group cycled through Mongolia.

“It was windy, often up to 40-kilometres an hour all day…and really, really hard terrain to cycle on,” she said.

Trenholme said Siberia and Russia were “spectacularly beautiful” and that she was surprised with how lush and mountainous they were.

“Kazakhstan was just lots of really flat grassland and we were happy to get through that, it was interesting just a bit monotonous,” she said.

The cyclists all carried their own equipment, which Trenholme said was a lot of gear.

“You take almost a whole second bicycle. I took 20 tubes, four sets of tires, a whole new drive change, break cables, all kinds of gear,” she said. “I am a skilled cyclist and I would not want to tackle this ride without skill because it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.”

This was the second long cycling trip Trenholme has completed. In 2016, she rode from Cairo to Cape Town to also raise money for KEEF.

karly.blats@pqbnews.com

Just Posted

Third delivery of building units for 222 Corfield in Parksville arrives April 26

Vehicles should expect intermittent, single-lane alternating traffic

City of Parksville to look into cost, process of beach cleanup

Cleanup would include removing rotten logs, adding sand

BC Ferries to pilot selling beer and wine on select routes

Drinks from select B.C. breweries and VQA wineries to be sold on Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen route

RCMP ask Parksville Qualicum Beach businesses for help battling thieves

‘With your assistance forensic evidence could be located for prosecution’

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Chaos at the ferry terminal for people heading from Vancouver to the Island

Easter crowds create backlog at Tsawwassen ferry terminal

B.C. RCMP receive application for Police Cat Services

RCMP announced the launch of the Police Cat Services unit as an April fools joke

Kirkland Signature veggie burgers recalled due to possible metal fragments

Recalled products came in 1.7 kg packages with a best before date of Apr. 23, 2019

Parents of 13 who tortured children get life after hearing victims

One of their daughters fled their home and pleaded for help to a 911 operator

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Storms blast South, where tornadoes threaten several states

9.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia at a moderate risk of severe weather

Private cargo ship brings Easter feast to the space station

There are three Americans two Russians and one Canadian living on the space station

Notre Dame rector: “Computer glitch” possible fire culprit

The fire burned through the lattice of oak beams supporting the monument’s vaulted stone ceiling

Most Read