For a change, Perak Chief Minister’s wife, Datin Seri Saripah Zulkipli took 50 foster children on a 45-minute caving adventure at Gua Tempurung yesterday.
The trip was organised jointly by the Wives of State Ecxo and Assemblymen Association (Baiduri) with Yayasan Bina Upaya Darul Ridzuan (YBU), which runs the foster children programme.
The children gathered at the cave entrance at 9am and were briefed by Pak Man, their tour guide, who gave caving tips and safety talks during the tour.
Throughout the dry walk tour along concrete pathways and steel staircases as far as the Golden Flowstone cavern, Pak Man provided the kids with educational information about the cave’s history, he explained the different formations of the stalactite and stalagmite and told them that each of such formations differ from the other.
He also told the kids that the cave is made up of five huge domes which ceilings resemble coconut shells which gave the cave its name.
The children were shown several formations on the wall of the cave that reflected vivid images of animals and human but is actually the effect from ‘guano’ or bat droppings.
Despite the high the humidity inside the cave and the kids being drenched in sweat, yet everyone involved were very happy and enthusiastic.
Saripah told Peraknews that she wanted to do the trip as it would give a different and unique experience for the kids.
“I felt this would be a different yet, educational, motivational and of course a memorable trip for all the kids,” she said.
“The children involved are the top scorers among the 104 children that my husband and I have fostered through YBU’s programme, and I felt by having trips like these, it will encourage them to perform better in their studies,” added Saripah.
Saripah, who was a former teacher walked with the children throughout the tour while enriching them with geographical and scientific information on the cave.
“I already have plans to have more trips like this in future and may probably organise a jungle trek at Royal Belum Rainforest,” she said adding that it is not only fun but makes it easier for children to understand and discover the state.
The Chief Minister’s wife who is also Baiduri President described her love for adventurous trekking and tours, and says it gets even better with her foster children whom she feels privileged to be with.
Also joining the trip were 10 Perakian scholars from various universities in the country.
“I want these scholars to share their University experiences with all these kids as I believe it will inspire the little ones,” Saripah explained.
One of the participants, Mohd Fauzi Roshdi from Cosmopoint International University in Kuala Lumpur, said Saripah must have been a very dedicated teacher which is why she can understand children and able to inspire and motivate them.