on 4 Dec, 18:45
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Biji-biji Initiative

Fairtrade in Asia: World Fair Trade Organisation Workshop

Biji-biji Initiative and WFTO are running a workshop to raise awareness and understanding about what it means to be a fairtrade organisation in Malaysia. This session is for anyone interested in learning about fairtrade in Asia, developing their sustainable and ethical agenda and registering as a Fair Trade Organization.

For registration
Email to:
Fee: RM20/person
(Payment should be made by cash upon arrival for the workshop)

SESSION 1: Introductions: participants, sustainability and Fair Trade

9:00 AM
Workshop Introduction by WFTO Asia

9:30 AM
Presentation of Biji-biji Initiative

10:00 AM
Break and Group Photo

10:15 AM
What is Fair Trade?
Practice of Fair Trade and Sustainable Business Model
What is the role of Fair Trade in Asia?

The World Fair Trade Organization Guarantee System
11:00 PM
WFTO Guarantee System (GS): how to apply and go through the monitoring system.

11:30 PM
Market Trends and Opportunities for products in the international market and the role of sustainability
The Fair Trade Asia Summit 2018 in Kathmandu, Nepal

Questions, Comments and Networking

More information here:


on 2 Dec, 19:43

Traffic congestion is that date we hate but can’t reject. Thing is, we can.

Traffic congestion is that date we hate but can’t reject. Thing is, we can.

The heavy traffic congestion in Malaysia does not happen by accident. The heavy traffic congestion in Malaysia is not an inevitable product of aggressive economic growth in the 1980s and 1990s. The heavy traffic congestion in Malaysia is definitely not a sign of a “developed country”, unlike what we were led to believe.

What the heavy traffic congestion in Malaysia really is – A product of a series of short-sighted decisions, and the lack of adequate planning and foresight of our leaders. Year 1982 marked the launch of The National Car Project by the Malaysian government. Under the project, citizens were encouraged to purchase our national car Proton in the spirit of patriotism. Gurmit Singh K.S., founder and former president of Environmental Protection Society, Malaysia (EPSM), was one of the few who protested aggressively against the policy, and with good reasons. As stated in his book “Memoirs of a Malaysian Eco-Activist”,

“Our organization (EPSM) considered the local production of cars to be an unnecessary and unwanted solution to the public’s transport woes. The increase in the number of cars on the road would inevitably cause an increase in air pollution and traffic. Furthermore, the National Car Project would shift government funding from public transport to the production of private cars… the worst criticism is that it set(s) Malaysia on a course of car-oriented planning which resulted in the massive traffic jam we are now experiencing.”

At this point, it is hard to tell which is more pathetic. The deliberate negligence of development on public transport system that would benefits the community in favour of private car ownership that causes traffic congestion today, or our national car Proton that, although enjoy success at a degree, proved to be financially unstable with net losses widened to as high as RM478.90 million as of March 31, 2017. Indeed, perhaps the most damaging legacy is the attitude towards car ownership inherited by our young adults today. The pursue of cars more than they could afford has costed Malaysians’ financial status gravely, tolling a total of 21,191 cases of bankruptcy due to car loans from 2013 to February 2017.

It is disheartening to see hard-earned money poured excessively into cars - something that only depreciates in value over time. Instead of buying out of necessity, young adults believe they can buy happiness.

It is disheartening to see hard-earned money poured excessively into cars – something that only depreciates in value over time. Instead of buying out of necessity, young adults believe they can buy happiness.

The exceptionally high car ownership in our country, coupled with improper road planning and some dangerous road condition, often lead to intense driving experience on the road. It is widely known that animals find it intolerable when others are too close for comfort. This trait developed through evolution is automatically activated whenever our personal space is invaded. Our survival instinct is preparing us with sufficient time and space to react for a potential scenario of assault. To put things into perspective, observe individuals, no matter how chatty they were before entering the elevator, would fall into silence almost instantly after they were trapped with strangers inside the small metal box. Once inside, any stranger with loud voice and big body motions would cause us painful discomfort. This sense of discomfort stemmed from the fact that the elevator door has shut and our only escape route has been cut off.

All of us are a claustrophobic at varying degrees.

All of us are a claustrophobic at varying degrees.

Prolonged exposure to this Fight or Flight situation may push some to the edge particularly for women who are more physically vulnerable. But fortunately for all of us, an elevator ride normally takes only a couple of minutes. Recall how you always heave a sigh of relief secretly when the elevator finally opens and you are compelled to leave as soon as possible? Now multiply that couple of tense minutes by 15 for an average 30 minutes traffic congestion experience on the road, top it up with the anxiety that even the tiniest touch between vehicles would cost you at least 3 digits loss of fortune.

We are not built to stay in this adrenaline-pumping condition for that extended period of time. Road violence is just a time bomb waiting to explode with the slightest catalyst. Research by Malaysian Institute of Road Safety (MIROS) in 2014 showed that as high as 18% of registered drivers in our country (2.4 million out of 13.3 million) are classified as ‘high-anger’ drivers.

According to statistic, you are more likely to meet an angry driver than your future girlfriend.

According to statistic, you are more likely to meet an angry driver than your future girlfriend.

A 2014 research conducted by the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute using 2008 World Health Organisation (WHO) data also listed Malaysia as the 17th to be most dangerous country among for drivers among 193 countries. No surprises there.

To ease the dire condition on the road and fix the mistake of the past, billions of ringgit has been tossed into building our public transport system in recent years. Trains, monorail and LRT are built for travel between locations in Kuala Lumpur, KLIA Express travels between KLIA1 and KLIA2, and KTM covers most major cities in Peninsula Malaysia and even across borders to Thailand and Singapore. Discount and promotion are also introduced occasionally to attract more riders, most recently the 50% discount for monorail, MRT, LRT and BRT from July to 31 August 2017. KL TravelPass, MyRapid Touch and Go card are also available for riders’ convenience.

However, despite efforts and money poured into the public transport system, ridership for all transit system has declined from 2014 to 2016 according to a report by Ministry of Transport. More importantly, the number of riders is not even high to begin with. We don’t need statistic to know that – the daily traffic condition tells that much. The main incentives for taking public transport should be its relatively lower transportation fee and the convenience the service provides but shockingly neither is the case in Malaysia. The cost for taking public transport system is often on par, if not higher, than taking the wheels on the road. A rider may spend RM 18 for a return trip from Puchong to Sunway via Sunway BRT but driving may cost similarly or lower including toll cost. Utilizing public transit does not guarantee time saving as well, as a rider may takes an hour to travel from Punchong to Sunway via LRT and BRT. This causes the system to lose its edge over private vehicles which take similar or lesser travel time.

Our public transport system has been unsuccessful in playing its part to relieve the notorious traffic condition in Malaysia. This situation is highlighted as recent as October 2017 but corrective actions are remained to be seen. To make an impactful difference, demand for a better public transit system should be integrated into part of a larger movement to make a stronger case. Climate change movement could connects the dots between social, economical, political and environmental issues under one banner.

Adnan A Hezri stated our dreadful situation clearly in his book “The Sustainability Shift: Refashioning Malaysia’s Future”:

“Heavy traffic plays a key role in driving air pollutant concentrations. The air pollution levels in the congested and traffic-heavy municipality of Petaling Jaya record a high concentration of.. nitrous oxide gas from motor vehicles. Fast-developing towns such as Kajang and Nilai are found to have high concentrations of air pollutants originating mainly from vehicle exhausts.”

Quick recap: Global warming occurs when carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHG) are collected in atmosphere and trap heat from sunlight and solar radiation. These gases normally last for years to centuries.

Quick recap: Global warming occurs when carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHG) are collected in atmosphere and trap heat from sunlight and solar radiation. These gases normally last for years to centuries.

What better reason to unite people for a cause other than saving the planet that our very lives depend upon? To reach that end, we should hold our leader accountable on their pledge in Paris Agreement by demanding improved public transport service as an approach to decrease our carbon footprint from motor vehicles. A movement with the ultimate goal to take climate change by the horns has the ability to bring together people from all walks of life who will benefit from it. We are talking about people coming from all sectors here – the underprivileged, low and middle class workers, healthcare personnel, lawyers, educators and everyone else who shared the same vision on equality, justice and just the general well-being of the people. A climate change movement with such momentum will give a strong push for the transport companies to serve the community on the ground instead of stockholders in a distant boardroom. To address the traffic congestion issue and unrelenting rise of petrol price, one of the main solution lies in a public transport system that provides affordable transport fare, convenient interconnected transport network, and better service such as shortened interval between transports.

Enrique Penalosa, former Mayor of Bogotá, Colombia once quoted fittingly to our current situation, “A developed country is not a place where the poor have cars. It’s where the rich use public transport”.


Original article:

on 1 Dec, 14:14

TTDI Fun Run

TTDI Fun Run
Upcoming Event

The TTDI RA 2017 Fun Run is the inaugural run undertaken by the Taman Tun Dr. Ismail Residents Association. It is a 5.5km run and starts off at Taman Rimba Kiara, goes through TTDI residential and commercial areas and culminates back at Taman Rimba Kiara.This year the run seeks to highlight the plight of Taman Rimba Kiara that has been earmarked to be converted from a green lung into multiple massive 50 storey condominiums.

The Run hopes to get everyone together, create awareness and to preserve Taman Rimba Kiara as a park for everyone.

To find out more details or to sign up for the run, simply visit the online registration page at:



on 26 Nov, 17:44

JB StartUp Course


YOUnified 2017 is a 4th Anniversary of Youth Southeast Asian Leadership Initiative (YSEALI) celebration and it is celebrated across the ASEAN region, where each country will implement a variety of community projects ranging from Civic Engagement, Entrepreneurship, Environmental Protection, Education, Youth Leadership and many more.

For Johoreans out there, if you interested in social entrepreneurship, you’re coming to the right place. This workshop will go through basic things on social entrepreneurship, details on social problem and affirmative action plan.
DATE: 9th December 2017
Venue: Institut Integriti Kepimpinan Dan Latihan Semangat Dato’ Onn ( IKLAS )
TIME: 8.00 AM
Keep Calm and Never Young Too Lead
Seats are limited, so register now and bring along your friends and colleagues!

on 25 Nov, 19:32

Volunteers WANTED! Kota Damansara Community Forest

Volunteers WANTED! Kota Damansara Community Forest
Past Event Volunteer!
The youngest you need to be is 15!

The youngest you need to be is 15!


Sukacita dimaklumkan Malaysian Primatological Society (MPS) dengan kerjasama Kota Damansara Community Forest Society dan Jabatan Perhutanan Selangor akan mengadakan bancian spesis pokok di Hutan Komuniti Kota Damansara.

Sukarelawan diperlukan untuk membantu program bancian spesis pokok di Hutan Komuniti Kota Damansara yang akan bermula pada 29 Nov hingga 1 December 2017.

Spesifikasi tugas:
1) Membantu memasang kuadrat 10 x 10 meter di sepanjang trail hutan komuniti.

Spesifikasi sukarelawan:
1) Sihat tubuh badan
2) Berusia15 tahun ke atas-remaja bawah umur (15-18 tahun) perlu kebenaran bertulis dari ibu bapa atau penjaga yang sah.

Makanan dan minuman disediakan sepanjang tempoh pelaksanaan program.

Bagi yang berminat dan untuk sebarang pertanyaan lanjut, sila hubungi: En. Muhammad Zaki Zainol, 0112-0847739 atau emel ke

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Welcome to MESYM!
Connecting the green dots is a crowd-sourced platform and a living database for environmental movements in Malaysia. There are many good actions being done out there. Our goal is to bring them together. We connect the green dots.