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That’s right – everyone’s favourite bazaar and food court experiences are back on-ground this year, teaming up for Tiffin Ber-RIUH Raya on the 1st and 2nd May at Sentul Depot! As one of the very first ‘new normal’ events to take place, there will be tightened and strict COVID-19 SOPs, including event admission by registration only. Registration starts 23rd April onwards, so make sure you register here to get Raya ready with RIUH!
As always, in the spirit of ‘support lokal’, Tiffin Ber-RIUH Raya will feature 52 homegrown retail brands with a fabulous array of apparel, accessories, cookies, home decor and beauty offerings to shop from. Popular picks include Whimsigirl, AnaAbu and Tangsi, while Machino, Bloom Batik and Jamuglo will bring some new names to the lineup. Also get ready to delight your culinary senses through Tiffin’s curation of 12 food and drink purveyors that will serve Raya flavours with a twist!
Not forgetting the giving spirit of Raya, you’ll be able to give back to society when you purchase from twelve Buy For Impact retail vendors – discover food, fashion, lifestyle and gifts that benefit different communities, such as single mothers, refugee youth, the hearing impaired community, and the environment.
The RIUH stage will also be returning this year with live performances, headlined by Ushera, Colour of Voices, Mafidz, Merakki, MAI and ASK Dance Company with a special Raya showcase.
MERAH HAREM, a lingerie and underwear webshop, breaks down rape culture with this article.
What is rape culture?
Firstly, ‘rape’ is defined as the gross act of demeaning and commodifying a person by way of forced sexual intercourse without consent. Rape culture refers to a social environment where sexual violence or assault is normalised, justified and excused, fueled by deep-rooted attitudes towards gender and sexual inequalities. Giving rise to a culture where the victim is to be blamed for their own sexual violence or assault, rather than to punish the rapist or perpetrator.
Victim-blaming would typically focus on the victim’s physical appearance such as their looks, clothes or makeup and their motives or choices leading up to the incident. This would then lend itself towards invisible social narratives to justify that the rapist was acting on sexual desires, unable to control their sexual urges or was sexually provoked, hence shifting the blame towards the victim. Further strengthened by cultural norms and institutions which would protect the rapist and subject the victim – most often women – and their entire gender to make changes on their actions and choices instead, thereby creating a society which disregards women’s rights and safety.
Rape culture would then perpetuate this inhumane act and allow sexual violence or assault to flourish, as the stigma associated to it, victim-blaming and institutional failure surrounding it would discourage victims from coming forward with their accounts. However, although the term ‘rape culture’ was first coined back in the 1970s, many recent incidences have propelled rape culture and questions surrounding it into the limelight, such as the #MeToo and #SlutWalk movements, which have addressed rape culture in mainstream outlets and encouraged people and victims to share their accounts or stories through hashtags on social media.
The Sexual Violence Pyramid
‘Harmless’ jokes and sexist attitudes within rape culture will do more harm than any good, as the use of misogynistic language such as “she asked for it”, “boys will be boys” or “women say ‘no’ when they mean ‘yes’ has elements of victim-blaming and objectification of women which trivialises sexual violence or assault. Such statements imply gender inequalities between men and women, where ‘manhood’ is to be seen as dominant and sexually aggressive, and ‘womanhood’ as submissive and sexually passive.
This is often amplified in the media and popular culture through mediums such as movies and television, which tend to gratify gender roles, sexual violence and tolerate sexually explicit jokes. An example on the last point, on a popular American dating reality show, the woman accidentally choked on her food during a dinner date and the man implied that the size of his d*ck would make her choke even more (alluding towards his crude intentions after the date). The woman confronts him immediately but was criticised for being “too sensitive” and “cannot take a joke”, which gaslights her experience. This triangle chart below by 11th Principle: Consent! exemplifies how dangerous such normalised attitudes and behaviours in rape culture can accumulatively add up towards further degradation and assault:
Wild Ginger previously wrote an article on online sexual harassment where behaviours such as stalking / following, sending non-consensual photos or videos and unsolicited dick pics would run rampant yet go ignored in this digital day and age. When the perpetrators are confronted on their actions, they would brush it off as women “overreacting” or “it’s not like it’s rape” – but it is precisely these sort of behaviours and the tolerance of them that is dangerous, because it has the potential to grow into worse outcomes as accountability was never held or pinned down to the perpetrator.
Rape Culture in Malaysia
A publication titled Enough of This Nonsense! Rape is Rape: A Malaysian Perspective (2019) shared that an average of five rape cases are being reported in Malaysia every day, alluding that it is a societal problem affecting all Malaysians who choose to engage in rape culture by endorsing rape myths. Earlier a rape myth was discussed on physical appearance, other popular rape myths in the publication refer to the emotional reactions of the victims, physical injuries, rape only happening between strangers, women lying about being raped and the idea that men cannot be raped. Another statistic indicates that one rape case happens every 35 minutes in Malaysia (Women’s Centre for Change, 2015) and, worse, towards minors; so to debunk one of the popular rape myths, an astounding seven out of ten rape cases are committed by someone known to the victim. Let these statistics sink in that these are indeed happening in our beloved country Malaysia.
Instead of seeking for justice, those in a position of power such as MPs would encourage rape victims to marry their rapists as an escape route from what they conceive rape to be – that the incident was simply sexual intercourse outside of marriage (charged under Section 376 of the Penal Code in the Sessions Court), which criminalises the sexual act rather than rape itself. Hence, rape culture in Malaysia carries heavy religious undertones to cover up perverted thoughts by harking on women to tutup aurat (cover up their modesty). For example, an accomplished woman MP was sexually harassed by a man who commented on her buah dada (breasts) despite wearing a hijab. The host, who seemed to be immuned to this degrading slur, thanked the man for his advice instead of calling him out in this public sexual harassment. This article also criticises the lack of moral gatekeeping compounded by Malaysian dramas, which tend to glamourise and vindicate gender stereotypes and violence rather than using media as an educational tool.
How can we combat rape culture?
We, as a global or Malaysian society member, have the opportunity to assess whether our behaviours and beliefs for biases permit rape culture to stay prevalent. On a smaller-scale, attitudes we have towards rape culture can be evaluated by identifying our stance towards inequalities surrounding gender and sexuality, as well as the policies we choose to support and the institutional failures we choose to challenge in order to play a role in influencing others:
- We, both men and women, can start by avoiding the use of language which objectifies or degrades the other gender or others, as it is often deeply embedded in the way we think and speak.
- Speak out if you hear someone making a sexually explicit joke that trivialises rape – for instance, the next time you hear someone say “I will rape / f*ck your mum” as an insult, address that it is vulgar and not right, nor should it be seen as funny.
- Educate yourself about rape culture – aside from having standings in law, education and the workplace, historically sexual violence or assault has been used as a weapon of war and oppression (i.e. ethnic cleansing and genocide).
- Be ever critical of the messages conveyed through media on gender roles and sexual violence by questioning its purpose.
- Create a culture of voluntary, enthusiastic and clear consent. We had a topic on Sexual Consent here.
- If someone or a survivor has confided in you on their account of sexual violence or assault, listen to them and be supportive – let them know that it is not their fault.
- When you see sexual violence happening, be an active bystander by: (1) assessing the situation; (2) supporting the victim if they are okay or would like help; (3) documenting the incident; (4) creating distractions to diffuse the situation; or (5) making a clear zero-tolerance statement to the perpetrator.
- Hold perpetrators accountable for their actions – do not allow them to make excuses, victim blame or allude to external factors such as sexual desires, alcohol or drugs for their behaviours.
These are just some actions you can take to combat rape culture – the first step is awareness that rape culture is indeed a prevalent issue, and following that, to quote a popular Bahasa Malaysia peribahasa, sedikit sedikit, lama lama jadi bukit (with little by little determination, soon the outcome will be substantial). You, can make a difference.
Note: Although this write-up debates gender inequalities between men and women, it is by no means an attempt to overlook others situated outside this gender binary. In challenging ‘Not All Men’, this is not to say that men do not experience sexual violence or assault too, however it is the notion that the majority of these incidences are perpetrated by men and this is the problem.
You can follow Merah Harem on Instagram for sex education resources and visit their website for more. If you or anyone you know is a victim of sexual violence, you can contact the Women’s Aid Organisation Hotline at 03 3000 8858 or SMS/WhatsApp TINA at 018 988 8058 .
A word that was trending several years ago, but is still more relevant than ever. How? It’s the reason why 40% of millennials overspend – literally just to keep up with trends, friends, and for instant gratifications.
So a hard but necessary question would be: what is your current financial situation like? And is it creating financial anxiety? Nearly 30% of millennials from that same study said they feel uncomfortable saying ‘no’ when someone suggests something unaffordable.
But you don’t have to feel that way. Know that you can always regain control of your finances and that it can be as easy as listed below:
- Switch To Cash: leave your debit or credit card at home in order to not overspend; practicing this trick will help you learn how to budget, too! If you’re a frequent Grab user, then gentle reminder that you can switch to cash. When ordering food via the app, use your Grab Wallet as opposed to your card, so that you limit your spending and don’t give into cravings.
- Hold Yourself Accountable: Find someone (a friend, family member etc.) with similar financial goals as you, then support each other in smashing those goals. Knowing someone else will check in on you and your spending means you will feel more inclined to perform according to your goals.
- Prepare An Exit Strategy: If you know you’re meeting someone who will tempt you to overspend, prepare your exit strategy. Your exit strategy can even include your financial goal buddy! Alternatively, it can be as simple as saying that you need to leave without disclosing why.
- Cook More: Eating out or ordering takeaway is usually more expensive than cooking at home; not only that, but your gratitude for what you’re eating diminishes, too. When you prepare an entire meal for yourself, you will appreciate the meal more as you know the effort that went into creating the dish. You will know what each ingredient is as well and can use that knowledge to cultivate a healthy relationship with food. Bonus: here is a list of 7 quick recipe ideas courtesy of TikTok.
- Get Organised: Find time to organise your closet – you just may be surprised at what fashionable items you (re)discover. By sorting through your belongings, you will be able to appreciate just how much you already have. If what you (re)discover is not your vibe anymore, then set up a swap session with your gal pals. Leftover items can be donated to orphanages, refugee centres, or Uniqlo if that’s easier for you. The brand collects and distributes unwanted clothes to the underprivileged.
- Make Your Spa Treatments Less Frequent: By reducing your number of visits to the beauty parlour, you will start to genuinely cherish each visit as opposed to visiting out of habit. Switching up the frequency will ensure that whenever you do visit, you really feel like you’re treating yourself, too – not just getting another thing checked off your to-do list.
Find Budget-friendly Alternatives
- Utilise Lunch-sets: Most restaurants will provide set meals that typically include a drink or dessert with a main meal – especially if you visit during lunch hour or dinner time. Remember to utilise these promotions by taking time to check what’s on offer. If you don’t like what you see, just find a restaurant that offers what you do like. It’s as easy as that!
- Go Thrifting: By visiting thrift stores, you will not only support the local economy, but also slow fashion. Plus, by buying thrifted clothes, your outfit will 100% be more unique unlike fast fashion, every item is (usually) one-off. OkGo in Subang is known for its hip selection, although it’s on the pricier side of the thrifting spectrum.
- Treat Yourself, At Home: Most of what is on offer at a beauty parlour can be replicated at home. After learning how to perfect an at-home manicure and/ or pedicure, you will be shocked at how much you can save! If you prefer massages, then you need to try an Ayuverdic abhyanga massage which incorporates warm oil.
- Host A Potluck: Visiting aesthetic cafes and restaurants can be fun, but gathering at home over a potluck is always more intimate. Pro tip: if you and your friends drink, make it a ‘bring your own booze’ (BYOB) potluck.
- Go To Events: Free events, even during the CMCO, exist. Better yet, viewing art can help your mental health. Pro tip: follow The Art Seni on Instagram for updates on free art exhibitions.
- Explore Nature: If you haven’t explored the jungles of Malaysia, then the fact that it’s a free activity may incentivise you. Pro tip: Taman Tugu is ideal for beginners and most importantly, extremely Instagramable.
Master multi-tasker, Sarah Chua, is the founder of Social Catch Digital Marketing, a boutique social media marketing agency powered by dedicated, hands-on creative minds. The social media marketing strategist’s passion can be seen as she plays the role of creative director, as well as photographer on site, to help others experience the same elation of launching their dream brands.
Despite only being in business for less than two years, Social Catch has elevated a number of lifestyle, fitness and wellness brands with their jazzy visuals and trendy tone of voice – these two elements are at the core of their DNA. Read on to learn more about this inspiring creative entrepreneur: how she started her own agency, grew an impressive network, and still finds time for self-care while running a business.
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What made you want to start your own boutique social agency?
As cliche as it sounds, I always had a passion for photography and putting together moodboards. Since I was a kid, I used to cut out magazines and create collages, and stick them all over my walls. I love the idea of creating visuals that entice people to want to learn more. My favorite part about my job role is building relationships with clients I feel connected with, and becoming a valuable part of each of their unique journeys.
How would you describe the content Social Catch creates?
It definitely is fun, community-oriented, and hopefully scroll-stopping (hehe). I love that we work with clients who allow us to think outside the box and truly explore different ways to express their brands to the public.
What’s been your most exciting campaign so far?
There are too many for me to specifically choose one, but a memorable one would be “The Aloha Bubble” which was program that Clubaloha, a boutique gym in Plaza Damas, had created to virtually connect with their community through daily virtual classes, intention-setting and meaningful content shared on a Telegram channel. This was such a beautiful campaign – we were able to come up with all the visuals for it and witness amazing reviews from all the subscribers. It was really heartwarming to be able to realise how the advantages of technology and digital marketing platforms can benefit us more than we think, especially during these tough times.
In your opinion, what makes for great content?
I don’t call myself an expert in digital marketing or whatsoever! But I do feel that great content is produced when there is good intentions behind it. With the right messaging, the power of whatever that content is can make a difference in people’s daily lives – especially because there is a ton of content rolling out everyday, and it matters.
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Where do you get your inspiration from?
I get a lot of my inspiration from Pinterest! Don’t know what I would do without it, especially when those days come and you’re out of brain juice! I also follow a lot of other established marketing agencies to see how they do it, and hopefully be able to learn a few things from them.
What networking advice do you have for other startup founders and entrepreneurs?
Firstly, always be kind! It costs zero cents to be nice to people and always get to know them how you would want others to get to know you. Also, practice makes perfect, so the more you practice talking to others, the more natural it will be for you. Don’t think too much about how you need to approach someone, just be yourself, be genuine and be kind!
How do you achieve a work-life balance?
I am honestly still working on that! I cannot lie that I am not an introvert, I actually did a personality test once and I had scored 99.9% extrovert, haha. But I try my best to set an intention each week and realign my priorities daily. I update my Google Calendar daily, I trust it more than myself to keep on schedule. But, yes, it took me a long time to get where I am today, so I am proud of it!
What are your self-care must-haves?
Hmmm… tough question! But I do think it’s important to have one whole day to myself every week where I treat myself to a good meal, not an expensive meal but a meal that I truly love; explore activities that do not require me to look at my phone too much, and also spend time with people who I care about. 24 hours – just me and a list of things that I should be doing more if I could!
Any last words?
I’d like to thank my team – Samantha, Valery and Michelle, for being superstars and working hard to make my dream job come true!
If you’ve got a vision you’d like to turn into a reality, reach out to Social Catch here and follow them for endless inspiration.
As I sat down to write this article, I already made my first mistake – I had my phone in plain sight. Instead of diving right into work, it was like a reflex to reach for my phone and get sucked into social media. I began mindlessly scrolling through Twitter and Instagram, TikTok for good measure, and the latest digital distraction – Clubhouse. It was only after getting a glimpse of the time (which we don’t seem to see even though it doesn’t leave our screens), and realising that I was officially off-schedule, when I quickly ran to my room and put away my phone. Now here I am writing with no digital distractions.
Like many other Malaysians, having to spend most of my time at home has made me more dependent on my phone. It did not come as a surprise to me that compared to other South East Asian countries, Malaysia had the highest upsurge in Internet usage due to our strict social distancing measures. Our phones placed the entertainment and connections that were separated from us, right at our finger tips. It doesn’t help that some of us have had to work unsupervised from home – turning off auto-relax mode was already hard to begin with.
Here are 6 tips that have helped me tune into what I’m doing without any digital distractions:
- Put your phone away!
No, not next to you with the screen faced down (unless you’re that disciplined then #goals), but in another room. Hopefully when it’s out of your sight, the urge to check it will leave your mind too. If your excuse is, “What if I get an important message?” – use a desktop version of the messenger-app, but keep it running in the background.
2. Schedule time to use your devices
It’s time to take back control and let your devices know when they can have your attention. Start with short, frequent breaks, like 5 to 10 minutes after every hour, and work your way up from there. You’ll soon be able to break the habit.
3. Replace your screen time with other tasks
Before reaching for your devices, ask yourself, “Why?”. It could be to do research, reply a message, or simply just take a break. But if you want to use it just for the sake of using it, ask yourself, “What else can I do during this time?”. Turn to your to-do list – you’ll find that you actually do have the time to wash the dishes, fold your laundry, workout and read.
4. Turn off notifications
If it’s something you don’t need to know right now (like who liked your picture), you don’t need to see it right now. We’re constantly distracted by pings and pop-ups, but most of these are unimportant information and interactions.
5. Delete apps you don’t use
Sometimes, when we’re bored, or basically just looking for a distraction, we start opening apps that we don’t use (there’s no need to check in on Snapchat, that ghost is doing fine). Delete, declutter, go Marie Kondo and let go of all the apps that no longer spark joy.
6. Journal when you wake up
Here’s a bonus tip that’ll help with your mental health too! When you wake up, grab your journal instead of your phone. Start scribbling down the first things that come to mind, or if you need prompts – “How do you feel about today?”, “Set an intention for the day”, “What are you grateful for?”. This sets us up for a more positive and productive day rather than losing ourselves, and a lot of time, scrolling through our devices in bed.
Digital distractions will never go away (they may even get worse), but by following these tips – we hope you’ll feel less overwhelmed and more focused on important and meaningful tasks!
Did you know that in Malaysia:
- A baby is dumped every three days
- 18,000 teenagers get pregnant each year
- STIs have doubled in the past decade
These are the dire consequences of undetailed sexual health education.
In a society such as ours, sexual health isn’t counted as physical health – it’s a subject that’s actually avoided. Youths are taught the very bare necessities, leaving too much room for misinformation. This has caused many to make harmful decisions, including baby dumping, having teenage pregnancies, and spreading sexually-transmitted infections.
It has become crucial for us to openly start acknowledging sexual health in order to protect our physical and emotional wellbeing, as well as others’. But how do we turn this taboo topic, which continuously sparks criticism, into a positive dialogue?
We asked Jasmine King (a sex positive advocate, speaker and sexual health educator), for her advice on breaking the stigma and normalising conversations around sex. She currently does this on her Instagram page, Jas Explains, where she promotes sexual empowerment by creating educational content, sparking important conversations and sharing sex positive resources.
What exactly is sexual health?
According to WHO, sexual health is the “positive and respectful approach to sexuality and sexual relationships, as well as the possibility of having pleasurable and safe sexual experiences, free of coercion, discrimination and violence”. In ensuring everyone receives adequate sexual health, it is important for us to have:
- Access to comprehensive, good-quality information about sex and sexuality;
- Knowledge about the risks they may face and their vulnerability to adverse consequences of unprotected sexual activity;
- Ability to access sexual health care;
- Living in an environment that affirms and promotes sexual health.
Simply put, sexual health encompasses everything that is connected to our sexual wellbeing, whether it be reproduction, relationships, laws and reforms, or diseases and dysfunctions.
What are the common misconceptions Malaysians have about sexual health?
A common one would probably be that sexual health is only about sex and the health of our reproductive organs, but it spans beyond that. It’s about health and rights, as well as the social aspect of sex. This encompasses our reproductive health and rights, sexual relationships, knowledge and education, diseases and dysfunctions, sexual violence like harassment or abuse, and harmful practices like female genital mutilation.
Why is it so important?
It’s important because sexual health is an aspect of our health, and despite the taboo and stigma that’s attached to it, it’s still very much important for us to educate ourselves on it – despite being married or not, young or old. Usually sexual health is only prioritized when couples want to start a family or when something traumatic happens like abuse/harassment.
How can we overcome sexual shame as a society?
A first big step to overcoming sexual shame is to first of all educate ourselves. We need to unlearn years of education and beliefs, which are masked by layers of taboo, stigma and shame, and relearn everything again from the start. By relearning and normalizing the conversation, we are then able to provide a safe space to educate others and receive without judgement.
As individuals, what are the benefits of overcoming sexual shame?
It releases us from some of the shame, judgement and fear that we carry. Sex and our bodies are a normal and healthy part of our lives and should be treated with respect, instead of disgust and shame. By allowing ourselves to overcome shame, we would be able to fully embrace our sexual and sensual side instead of fearing them.
What does it mean to be sex positive?
Someone who is sex positive values consent, communication, education that allows people to make informed choices about their bodies, and pleasure. They respect and do not judge those who consensually practise diverse sexuality and gender expressions.
As sex is a religious stigma here, how can we promote a more sex positive culture?
We can do this by not focusing so much on the term ‘sex’ and changing the language to make it more accessible and neutral for everyone. Hence why, sex education is also known as ‘comprehensive sexuality education (CSE)’ and sex positivity is also referred to as ‘positive sexuality’. Changing the language as well as acknowledging that it’s more than just about sex can promote a more sex positive culture. CSE covers an array of topics which includes:
- Understanding the correct names of our bodies, especially genitals
- Safe, unsafe and unwanted touches
- Healthy and unhealthy relationships
- Gender and sexuality
- Pleasure-based education
- Puberty and menstruation
For more information on sexual health, tune into Jasmine’s podcast, I Wish Someone Told Me, to hear stories by Asians, or those living in Asia, on gender, sexuality, dating, intimacy and sexual empowerment. You can also follow @iwishthepod and @jasexplains on Instagram for more sex positive content and resources!
The hardest part of working out is showing up, but that changed when we began working out at home – the hardest part became starting. It was easy to get motivated at spin classes and running clubs, but at home, the lack of energy and readily-available equipment makes for an excuse to not workout.
You can still enjoy a (safe) group workout or get the help of a trainer through Zoom, but with the right equipment – you can do your own sweat-inducing exercises at any time. From living room essentials to easy-to-do moves, we asked Coach Kyrie, a strength and conditioning coach at District 13, for his recommendations and advice when it comes to working out at home:
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What equipment do we need to set up our own home gyms?
I believe we only need 3 to 4 pieces of equipment to really maximize our home workout sessions:
- A yoga mat – this helps create the surface area you need with the right grip, support and cushioning with the right thickness, so invest in a good yoga mat!
- If strength training is your thing, then adjustable dumbbells are definitely an essential to have at home with you. They don’t take up a lot of space and are sufficient enough to get that strength in.
- A good jump rope is one of the best investments you can make, especially when you’re unable to move regularly and get your steps in on a daily basis. Personally, it’s a good alternative to get your steps in and also improve your cardiovascular exercise. The best part about it is that it doesn’t require much space!
- Lastly, a pull up bar – they fit in most door frames without taking away too much space in your lovely home, and it’s easy to put away when not in use. It’s definitely a game changer if you’re looking to get your first ‘pull up’ at home!
If we can’t get the equipment, are there any household items we can use instead?
For sure! Need a kettlebell? Fill up a backpack with some books / magazines, and you’ve got yourself a homemade kettlebell. Looking for something heavier? Try using a gas cylinder! What about a dumbbell? Pick up large laundry detergent bottles. If those are too heavy for you, you can use soup cans as small weights.
When there’s a will, there’s always a way! One of our most experienced members at the gym took it to the next level by filling up two pails of water and using a broomstick to simulate an olympic weightlifting movement. That’s dedication! There are plenty of ways to get creative when using household items for your workout, but the most important factor to consider when using them as equipment would be safety.
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As a fitness coach, what are your favorite home workouts to do?
I love my Olympic weightlifting setup at home! I am lucky to be living in a house with a decent amount of space on the porch to store my equipment – such as my barbell, plates, squat rack, and rubber floor mats.
You were previously an indoor-cycling coach at Cycology. For those who are used to spin classes, but don’t have their own bike, what similar exercises can they do?
I just had this conversation with my coach a couple of days ago – on how to simulate the same stimulus of being on the bike if you don’t have a bike at home. You definitely can’t simulate the feeling of riding on a spin bike, off the spin bike. It’s like asking someone to practice their pedalling skills on the bike without having a bike. It would be best to work on exercises that could improve your riding performance on the bike, such as glute and core strengthening exercises!
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Personally, how do you find the motivation to workout at home?
I used to believe that you need motivation to do anything, but then I realised, how am I supposed to look for motivation every single day for 365 days? My advice to everyone out there is to start with understanding what your goal is when it comes to working out at home. The next step would be to have a plan of how you’re going to execute it. Thirdly, action. With action, motivation will automatically kick in and more motivation will flow once you slowly achieve those goals.
What’s your go-to pre-workout snack and post-workout drink?
I consume dates as a pre-workout snack. Post workout drink would be coconut water – nature’s best electrolyte!
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As a former competitive athlete (Kyrie was a state volleyball player representing Selangor, an amateur competitive cyclist representing Reclaim Sports, and an amateur CrossFit athlete under Reebok Malaysia), what empowered you to become an instructor?
Helping others in need work towards self development on an individual and global scale.
For the first episode of Wild Ginger Connects, we had model, Alicia Amin, talk to the MP for Muar (and fellow millennial), YB Syed Saddiq, about struggles such as mental health, bullying, brain drain and cancel culture. These are issues that we all face, but how does the youngest Malaysian to take office overcome them?
That’s a question he wishes he would get asked in interviews – how he deals with the stress, but his answer isn’t his cats or exercise. It’s the inspiration he gets from his mother. Awww! The newly-retired teacher raised four (then) troublesome children while being the main bread winner of the family. She’s also been acknowledged as the best teacher in both her school and the state of Johor!
Syed Saddiq on Mental Health
“We have to break that taboo, and for us to do so, there must be that transparent, open national conversation and discourse on mental health. A lot more people must start sharing it – that’s why I truly value when a lot of youth icons start speaking up about it, like Tengku Iman. When that’s shared in public, it gives a sense of familiarity that even people in these particular positions also suffer from it, how they overcome it, and hopefully, will start that conversation among others.”
Syed Saddiq on Bullying
“The last thing which I want is for others to see and then get even more demotivated because of what happens in parliament. For example, if other young people see, ‘If this is how they treat young parliamentarians, then I don’t think there’s a future for me in politics’. I don’t want for them to see that! So, that’s where I think, dealing with it with compassion, speaking up on these issues, getting other members of parliament (even from that particular party) to speak up against these tactics.”
Syed Saddiq on Brain Drain
“Young people have that very passionate and diverse energy – instead of suppressing it, why don’t you address it? Deal with it and try to harness it in a positive way. I think if we do that, we would be able to partially also deal with brain drain – there are obviously many other reasons why, but I think we can at least start by listening to them and taking them seriously instead of, every time they come up with a funky idea, ‘You’re wrong, that’s criminal, goodbye’. That’s wrong.”
Syed Saddiq on Cancel Culture
“If you lock them up with a particular stereotype or because of one mistake, or a few mistakes, then it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. The person is more likely to commit mistakes over and over again because you don’t guide them to the right path. It’s about really showing compassion, and genuine care, and empathy to bring the person out of that hole.”
Watch the full interview below:
As health officials continue to urge us to stay at home to stop the spread, we must remember that staying at home is a privilege. Yes, the pandemic is hard for us all, but it is important to acknowledge the different realities others face with underprivileged families being affected the most.
Some members of these disadvantaged groups depend on a daily income to take care of their families and themselves, so the negative economic impact has left them even more vulnerable. Staying at home also poses a threat to women and children who have to live with their abusers.
We must stand together and support these severely affected communities, as well as frontline workers who might be heroes but are also still human – they are struggling to work around the clock with the limited resources available.
NGOs have proven to necessity these past few months, so here’s how you can help:
- Donate to emergency food aid boxes
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When CMCO was announced in Klang Valley area, our beneficiaries are at risk of losing their daily income once again. They are afraid if they had to endure another hunger experience like during the first MCO. This is because these families heavily depend on their daily wage to buy food. If there’s no income on that day, there is no food on the table and they will sleep with a growling stomach. With CMCO in place, it’s very challenging to earn money and food security becomes their biggest problem. Thus, we receive a lot of food aid requests and we’re doing our best to cater all the needs, to make sure that nobody will sleep with a hungry stomach. Unfortunately, we could not do this alone and we need your help. Help us to support these 700 families and with every ringgit donated to our CMCO Emergency Food Aid Boxes, you are saving these families from hunger. You can donate to our CMCO Emergency Food Aid Boxes at: CIMB Islamic Bank Mercy Mission Malaysia (Charity Right) 8600669196 DM us if you have any questions! #covid19 #kitajagakita #rakyatjagarakyat
Charity Right Malaysia reduces the burden of families by providing them with a steady supply of meals every month. They aim to keep children in school instead of having to quit and support their family.
2. Buy a meal for someone in need
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Sponsor hearty meals for charity homes through Ari’s Offering. Their social giving programme allows you to make recurring donations with every RM10 contributing to a meal.
3. Help Sabah’s healthcare system
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MERCY Malaysia is initiating an Islamic Social Financing (ISF) Fund Raising Program to support Sabah. Your contribution will be used to procure medical equipment which will be endowed (waqaf) to the Ministry of Health. Together, we can help reduce our country’s burdens and save lives. Channel your donation to: MERCY MALAYSIA Maybank Islamic 5642 5858 7606 Reference code: Wakaf COVID19 All your contribution in cash is tax deductible and will be fully used to purchase medical equipment. For more details, please visit www.mercy.org.my/donation, or Contact : Amrul Hazarin (+60 19 399 5854)/ Asyraf Fitri (+60 19 314 0039) Email : email@example.com #kitajagakita #mercywaqaf #islamicsocialfinancing #covid19
The lack of medical resources, including hospital beds, has Sabah struggling with their overwhelming amount of cases. Mercy Malaysia is raising funds for medical equipment and you can find more ways to help, even with their mental health, here.
4. Support domestic abusive survivors
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We are preparing for another spike in domestic violence with the increase of COVID-19 cases. Help us support survivors and continue our life-saving work. ACCOUNT NAME : WOMEN’S AID ORGANISATION BANK ACCOUNT : CIMB BANK BERHAD ACCOUNT NO. : 80-0238299-7 All donations of RM50 and above will receive a tax exempt receipt. (https://forms.gle/qAAM9FDDkR53hhVbA) Your donation will help WAO to operate : – WAO’s 24 hour hotline and TINA WhatsApp / SMS service – Counselling services – The Women’s Refuge – The Child Care Centre – Social Work
The Women’s Aid Organisation provides mental health and crisis support to women and children who have experienced abuse. Lockdowns, around the world, have caused a rise in domestic violence.
5. Supply frontlines with personal protective equipment
Semporna Heroes helps assist hospital workers, collecting funds to purchase food and medical supplies for frontliners. They also donate carepacks to struggling communities in Semporna.
This is why we need to work together and do our best to help each other out. It may seem like a small act to some, but your donation can make a huge difference!
Every year since 2012, the United Nations has observed October 11 as International Day of The Girl Child. The international organisation declared a Day of The Girl to recognise girls’ rights and the unique challenges they face worldwide. They reported that nearly 1 in 4 girls between the ages of 15 and 19 are neither employed nor in education compared to 1 in 10 boys of the same age. The International Day of the Girl demands for the commitment to tackle these challenges, boost empowerment and uphold human rights.
This year, following the theme, My Voice, Our Equal Future, the focus is placed on protecting adolescent girls from gender-based violence, harmful practices and HIV and AIDs, as well as providing them with the skills needed to succeed in the future of their choice, and supporting their activism to advance social change. Here are 5 Malaysian women who are breaking the barriers set by stereotypes and exclusion to create a more accessible and inclusive space for future generations:
1. Dr Chan Yoke Fun
The first Malaysian to win the Asean-US Science Prize for Women, Dr. Chan was recognised for her research on developing a single vaccine for both hand, foot and mouth disease, and brain diseases in children. She is the head of the Medical Microbiology Department in Universiti Malaya’s Faculty of Medicine and was picked among 10 national finalists who played promising roles in preventive healthcare.
2. Nor “Phoenix” Diana
Not only was Nor Diana the first hijab-wearing pro-wrestler, she was also the first female winner of the Malaysia Pro Wrestling Wrestlecon championship, beating out five men. The former clinical assistant was featured on this year’s Forbes 30 Under 30 list and has been training with the British independent women’s professional wrestling promotion – Pro Wrestling: EVE.
3. Arinna Erin
Remember when Nike launched their first modest swimwear collection? One of the models who appeared in the global campaign was Malaysian, Arinna Erin. The hijabi-model is signed to BAME Models in the UK, where she received her Master of Science in Business Intelligence and Social Media from Brunel University, London.
4. Yangsze Choo
We were all excited for Netflix’s The Ghost Bride – a Taiwanese/Malaysian drama set in 19th century Malacca. The cast and crew were mainly made up of Malaysians, but the story itself was also written by a Malaysian whose book was ranked on the New York Times’ bestseller list and Oprah.com’s Book of the Week. Yangsze Choo’s second novel, The Night Tiger, was also a success – securing her a spot on New York Times and Publishers Weekly’s bestseller lists, as well as Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club.
5. Steffi Sarge Kaur
Steffi Kaur was a national football player and futsal player known for representing Malaysia in the Southeast Asian Games and South Asian Games. Now she is a FootGolf player, recently representing Malaysia at the FootGolf Asia Cup in Australia. Kaur grew up wanting to be a scientist until she was captivated by the athletes at the opening ceremony of the 1998 Commonwealth Games.
Everyone has the right to a safe, educated and healthy life, but unfortunately, many adolescent girls are denied these guarantees and freedoms. Girls have the power to change the world because they make up almost half of the population – imagine how much more effective problem-solving would be if we all worked together to solve climate change, political conflict, economic growth, disease prevention and global sustainability? In the words of Michelle Obama, “Women and girls can do whatever they want. There is no limit to what we as women can accomplish”. Let’s get it, girls!
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Happy Malaysia Day 🇲🇾 We sat down with a few East Malaysians (@elenalaurel, @_llyshae, @aniqdurar & @sam.tzes) to understand them better and how we can create a more inclusive environment for our fellow Malaysians. Don’t miss the good food recommendations at the end! #BreakingByWildGingerMY
For the first episode of Breaking! – a series that aims to break stigmas, stereotypes, boundaries and barriers through simple conversations, we invited four East Malaysians to share the disconnect they’ve been facing in West Malaysia.
Although Sarawak and Sabah are the biggest states in Malaysia, their physical separation from the peninsular has them often overlooked and othered by their own country.
“There’s definitely a disparity to me,” says Ellysha, a student from Sarawak, “especially with the culture”. She noticed that people are more segregated in West Malaysia compared to the multicultural and multi-religious Borneo. “I got really shocked when people were really interested in my religion or race.”
Samuel, a fresh graduate from Sabah, was also startled by the ignorance that still exists. He shares that “do you live in trees?” continues to be a common stereotype. “Yeah, we even have WiFi on the tree”, is his comeback to the off-colour joke.
Stereotypes are used to oppress minorities. Elena, a freelancer from Sabah, asks West Malaysians to recognise their privilege and use it to help East Malaysians. She worries that because of their lack of access to good education and reliable information, ” When some Sabahans don’t know better – I really hope West Malaysians won’t take advantage of that”.
How can we improve this cultural incompetence? Aniq, an actor from Sarawak, simplifies the solution to “stop talking and listen to us”. He sees media as a powerful tool and calls for more representation both in front of and behind the camera to help amplify their voices. “Redefine what Malaysia looks like to you … There’s more than just this one narrative – it’s diverse.”