A total of 16 NGOs attended the meet-and-greet session organised by Yayasan Sultan Idris Shah (YSIS) held recently at the YSIS centre along Lorong Bercham 11. Besides making the centre a hub for all NGOs to gather, the function was aimed to introduce the Ipoh NGOs to the newly-appointed Wong May Ing, the Executive Councillor for Women and Family Development, Character Development, and Social Welfare.
“Great response today as many people are very happy that we are actually holding this meeting. Many of us didn’t think of it before. When I took over in June, I thought we must get everybody together rather than each one doing activities on their own. We will share all the expertise and skills in various organisations so that is the main aim,” Dato’ Dr Ramanathan Ramiah, CEO of YSIS told Ipoh Echo.
Among the NGOs present were Ohana Autistic Centre, National Stroke Association of Malaysia, Daybreak, Ipoh Down Syndrome (KIWANIS), Sekolah Semangat Maju (Perak Association For Intellectually Disabled), Rotary Club Ipoh and Network for the Needs of Children with Disabilities.
“I urge the NGOs to present their programmes for the year and its budget to us. From there, we’ll check and study on how help could be channelled. I truly appreciate the NGOs for their service to the community,” Wong May Ing stated.
Both Yayasan Sultan Idris Shah (YSIS) and Persatuan Pemulihan Sultan Azlan Shah Bercham are located at Lot 158413, Lorong Bercham 11, Bercham, 31400 Ipoh. It offers physiotherapy and pain management services for the public at a minimal fee of RM30 per session. Being a non-profit community centre, any surplus of the revenues will go towards equipment upgrade. It opens from 8am till 5pm for Mondays to Fridays and 8am till 1pm on Saturdays.
Dr Ramanathan also runs a free orthopaedic consultation clinic (by telephone appointment only) at the institution in which one can opt to donate any amount to YSIS.
“The yearly running cost of the whole centre is approximately RM1.2 million. For instance, we have two hydrotherapy pools. In order to heat up the bigger pool to body temperature, we have to switch it on the day before the therapy. That alone costs us about RM180 to RM200 per session. Plus we need to maintain, clean and physically filter the pool every morning to balance its acidity and alkalinity,” Dr Ramanathan explained.
“The therapy here used to be free for 26 years as the trustees refused to charge. Later it was realised, the funding became so little that we couldn’t function or pay therapists who need to support their families. It was decided only in June 2016 we’ll charge a minimal fee of RM30 for a full session. Outside, it’s about RM150 for one hour of speech therapy and up to RM400 per hour for hydrotherapy,” he added.
The centre is still expanding to include aged care for the able-bodied to be opened by December. Readers who would like to donate to YSIS can channel their contribution to CIMB account number 80-0504634-2 (Yayasan Sultan Idris Shah). YSIS accepts volunteers too. Call 05 548 1905 or visit ysis.org.my for more details.