Cycling was a passion of Co van Kessel throughout his life in Thailand. Sharing this passion with thousands of visitors every year through his famed bicycle tours was not only Co’s way of showing others the beauty of Thailand; it was also his way to connect with the Thai people. As a company, Co van Kessel Bangkok Tours looks to continue Co’s legacy of promoting cycling in Thailand while giving back to local and rural communities. Here are several ways and projects in which Co van Kessel supports the local and rural communities in Bangkok and beyond.
Our philosophy is to take our guests off the beaten path, to experience the real, authentic Bangkok. We explore local communities, alleys and markets that you won’t find on your own. During these years we have developed a great relationship with the local communities. While exploring Bangkok off the beaten path, we include local shop owners in our tours to profit from visitors from all over the world that they couldn’t otherwise. Every tour will stop at a different local shop or home-style restaurant to buy water, snacks or entire meals to have the entire community participate and share. For most local shop owners, our bicycle tour is the main source of income, like Khun A. Neaw.
The Co van Kessel “Cycle to school” project began in 2009 as a way to spread the spirit of cycling in Thailand through the donation of bicycles to underprivileged children in rural communities. When Co first had the opportunity to visit the Thai countryside that year, he discovered that the youth in small villages often had to walk large distances to school. During the rainy season, this meant trudging through muddy rice paddies for extended periods of time to arrive at school in a soiled uniform. Clearly, the difficulty for young children to make their way to school also translates to tardiness and absenteeism in an area of the country where obstacles to a good education are already too many.
Bangkok is a very diverse metropolis where different cultures and religions live in good harmony. During a 3 hour bike tour you may stop at a Thai or Chinese temple, Catholic church or a mosque all within close proximity. To support the religions in the communities, Co van Kessel Bangkok Tours makes regular donations to temples, churches and mosques in the area.
On the 15th of July of 2012, the founder of the Bangkok bicycle tours Mr. Co van Kessel passed away. Having lived with and along Bangkok’s local communities he had one last wish. He didn’t want a fancy funeral but insisted on making donations to those who need it. Now, on the anniversary of his passing away, Co van Kessel Bangkok Tours makes donations the entire day to local initiatives such as temples, shops, schools and individuals.
Januari marks the month of Children’s day. This day, Co van Kessel Bangkok Tours visits local schools in the nearby communities. To show our support to the schools and children we donate not only donate cash, but also goods such as pens, books, toys and more.
Giving to, and sharing is of high importante in Thai culture. Co van Kessel Bangkok Tours gives back to the community in many different ways to show support. From officials events such as Bike for Dad to small local initiatives, we are highly aware of our Corporate Social Responsibility. Sharing = caring!
If you have any questions about this event or would like to participate with a donation, please contact us via the contact form on our website.