May 3, 2018

Adventist Bikers Organize Health Fair at National Gathering in Brazil

Jhenifer Costa, South American Division News & Adventist Review

A group of Seventh-day Adventist bikers was among the more than 20,000 who attended the 22nd National Bikers Gathering in Artur Nogueira, Sao Paulo, Brazil, from April 20-22, 2018. Adventist bikers and other church members made the most of the national event to organize a health fair that provided various services to attendees.

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“It was a joint effort between Adventist bikers’ clubs across Sao Paulo State,” said regional Adventist bikers’ coordinator Adriano Marquetto. “And it was a great opportunity to share a message of hope and quality of life with thousands of bikers.”

Marquetto said it is refreshing to witness the contribution of Adventist bikers. “Everywhere I go, I see that there are many Adventist bikers involved in mission,” he said.

It is the third health fair organized by the Adventist Bikers Club, a group launched 13 years ago and now present in various Brazilian cities. In its third edition, volunteers offered blood sugar tests, blood pressure check-ups, massages, and shared tips on how to better take care of one’s health through diet and physical activity.

Every biker who visited the health fair received a free book — The Power of Hope — which discusses the importance of taking care of our emotional health.

It didn’t take long for visitors to show appreciation for the initiative.

“It’s very important that [this group] is insisting that we should take care of our bodies,” said biker and police officer Marcelo Calderani. “Indeed, in places such as these, we sometimes find heavy drinks and other items that do not add up to our wellbeing.”

Event organizer José do Carmo Rissi shared that the Adventist health fair is an innovative practice, something extremely positive participants. “And it made a difference,” he said, “because when a biker had an emergency, she was promptly helped by the [health fair] volunteers.”

Rissi is very happy with the results and would like the health fair becomes a recurrent event. “I hope [Adventist bikers] can be present also in future events such as this,” he said.

In Brazil, the Adventist Bikers Club is coordinated by physician and biker Décio Gomes. For him, the most important element is the relationships the group is developing with other riders. “It’s an extremely important space for us,” he acknowledges. “What we do here is urban mission.”

Currently, Adventist Bikers Clubs are present in 22 Brazilian states, with a total of almost 900 members. They are part of the Brazilian chapter of Adventist Motorcycle Ministries (AMM). Besides health fairs, they take part other projects which support a better life, a general sense of wellbeing, and caring actions.