Nova Scotia

Vancouver man bikes across Canada for refugees

A Vancouver man biked across Canada this summer as part of a fundraiser to help displaced people living on the border between Burma and Thailand.

A Vancouver man who  biked across Canada this summer as part of a fundraiser to help displaced people living on the border between Burma and Thailand has arrived in Halifax.

Rod Germaine set out from Vancouver in June and arrived on Sunday after 63 days of pedalling. Germaine said he biked an average of 100 kilometres a day.

He said he started his charity after a trip to Burma, also known as Myanmar, a few years ago.

The people of that area are suffering under a brutal military regime that has chased hundreds of thousands into the Burmese jungle or across the border into Thailand, and they live on the run, he said.

Health care is almost inaccessible for anyone not living in refugee camps supported by non-government organizations, he said..

"I give money to a little hospital called the Mae Tao clinic and this related mobile paramedic operation. Those two organizations deliver health care to these people," Germaine said.

The Mae Tao clinic provides free health care for refugees, migrant workers and other people who cross the border to Thailand from Burma .

Germaine said he timed his trip to coincide with a milestone in his life coming up on Tuesday.

"Fortuitously my law school class is having a reunion this year. We graduated 40 years ago, in 1971, so there was an objective to attend my law school class reunion and I knew I could use the trip as a vehicle to raise money for these people."

It is Germaine's first trip to Halifax since 1978.

Members of his class were on hand Sunday afternoon to greet Germaine at Dalhousie Law School.

So far, he has raised almost $20,000 for the Mae Tao clinic.

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