Pedalling for charity
Hannah Kern, a 25-year-old woman from England, is on a solo charity bike ride from Hanoi to London to raise awareness and funds for four charities.
Titled "Hannah's Happiness Project", the bike ride started on April 2019 in Vietnam, and it recently took her through Bangladesh.
Kern entered Bangladesh through Tamabil border in Sylhet on February 3. On a Facebook post detailing her time in the country, she mentions, "When planning my route through Bangladesh, many people told me that the rivers throughout the country have a wonderful and impressive travel network that I must experience. This helped me to decide on a route where I would cross the Meghna River from Chandpur to Barisal, the home of a great cyclist community."
She explained why she is a "happiness activist". "I believe that the best and most powerful strength of an individual is the ability to make someone smile. I also believe that we must start asking why there are issues in our world related to animal rights, human rights, climate change etc," she said.
Speaking with this correspondent on Thursday, she said she hopes to encourage people to join this happiness movement.
She has already passed through Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar and India, crossing 8,000 kilometres. "The people of this country have been helpful and kind. Everywhere, they have given me shelter, advice, and support," she said.
"I hope my journey through Bangladesh inspires others to visit this beautiful country," Kern added.
Kern met with Lal Sobuj Society, a group of cyclists in Barishal, and roamed around the city with them on bicycles.
Tahasanuddin, a member of the group, said they highly appreciate the message Hannah is conveying through her happiness project.
Kern began her journey towards the Sundarbans through Bagerhat on Thursday.
According to her website, she will visit Nepal and Pakistan in the subcontinent as well.
She aims to raise 50,000 British pounds for the charities -- Crisis, Friends of the Earth, Doctors Without Borders and War Child UK.