WHERE THERE’S A WHEEL, THERE’S A WAY
Andrew Ong was part of a family where his parents divorced, he later dropped out of school and joined a gang. At the age of 18 he went to prison for the first time because of gang violence. At the age of 20, he went to prison for the second time for a drug overdose. After both times, he faced countless difficulties in reintegration into society.
Most employers reject applicants with criminal records. Until one day, in an effort to find a job after time in prison, a restaurant accepted him as a waiter, despite him having a criminal record. They said “It's okay, as long as you do your job well”. This was the moment that gave Andrew hope to start a new life.
Andrew then started to pursue further studies and graduated with a degree in media management from Edith Cowan University. He has since committed his time and energy as a defender of those who have committed crimes.
Andrew realised that cycling and exercise was an important factor in helping him detox, “as someone who has been in and out of prison, I realised that sport can be a great way to motivate others and open up a new circle of connections to break the cycle of recidivism.” In 2020, he founded Break The Cycle, an impressive initiative that uses cycling to help former Singaporeans start a new life with sportsmanship and the power of friendship.
WHERE THERE IS FRIENDSHIP, THERE IS THE SOLUTION
The idea behind Break the Cycle was not about creating a club but a movement which uses cycling to create an inclusive community where members can grow personally and form new meaningful friendships.
This is at the heart of Break the Cycle - building friendships through learning to trust again. Break the Cycle is going from strength to strength and currently has 70 members, including 10 females. 20% of these riders are ex-offenders. The club meets three times a week for 200km, 4-hour rides!
Team MUDE is truly inspired by this amazing community and is delighted to be the provider of the cycling apparel for the group. We hope that Break the Cycle will continue to achieve new goals in the future!