By Mei Kuan
Under the corporate social responsibility (CSR) programme of Team Keris Berhad (TKB), today saw the presentation of a brand-new motorised wheelchair to Jenny Pong Seow Chin, local icon of perseverance and positivity, in order to replace her existing unit which had ceased to operate.
It all began in October when TKB contributed a sum of RM18,500 towards the then ongoing fundraising effort by the NGO, Soroptimist International Ipoh (SI Ipoh) towards the purchase of the wheelchair. The decision to contribute towards the cause was made within seconds after the TKB team came to know of Jenny’s need.
Dato’ Lee Seng Hee, the Group Executive Chairperson of TKB via a press release stated, “Please receive our congratulations for not allowing the challenges and complications that come together with T9 paraplegia deter you. Instead, you choose to celebrate what life may offer through your own small business of selling homemade nyonya curry paste – it has given us much food for thought and inward reflection.”
This morning, present at the presentation held at TKB’s premises along Jalan Sultan Nazrin Shah were Datin Irene Chan, Group Deputy Chairperson of TKB, Kimberly Tan, President of SI Ipoh and Wong Siew Fong, member of SI Ipoh.
“The new motorised wheelchair, custom-made by a supplier in Ipoh, took over a month to complete. In addition to having an adjustable height, the wheelchair has extra space to store necessities such as an umbrella and handphone. The unit can reach a faster speed too. In the event that the battery runs out, the unit can also be pushed manually,” Kimberly explained.
According to Datin Irene, she first learnt of Jenny’s story about 20 years ago at an event where Jenny was present.
When asked if she has any words of encouragement for Jenny, Irene expressed, “It’s the other way round! All this while, she supports her own livelihood and never gives up in hard times. She even goes the extra mile by helping others. She has a very kind heart and a very healthy mind that will carry her through the rest of her life.”
“We are currently planning ahead for more CSR activities in the future. We always believe in giving back to society,” she told Ipoh Echo.
“It is our company’s motto to give back to society via charity and also by delivering the best to property purchasers to ensure every single cent they invested is valuable,” she said, adding that she hopes 2022 will be a better and brighter year.
Wheelchair recipient Jenny, who is a double leg amputee, shared,” I’m very happy and I’d like to express my utmost gratitude to Dato’ and Datin Lee for their kindness.”
Regarding her small business of selling homemade nyonya curry paste, she elaborated, “I used to offer sambal belacan paste and ginger sauce as well. Due to the rising cost of ingredients and because I do not wish to increase the price of the pastes, I only make curry paste for now which sells at RM10 for 250g. I do not want to increase the price as I hope that everyone can afford to buy my curry paste, no matter rich or poor.”
Her signature curry paste is made of all natural ingredients without preservatives added: “Most of the ingredients are planted by my elder brother.”
“I observed a 99.5% drop in sales in the pandemic. No matter what, I still will carry on,” she pointed out.
The proceeds from her small business help her to cover her living expenses as well as ongoing medical treatment as she is also currently diagnosed with diabetes and high blood pressure.
“In view of the rising cost of ingredients for curry paste, I have plans to prepare some steamed glutinous rice with chicken (lo mai gai) for sale soon. I got the idea after speaking to Datin Lee,” she enthused.
Every Chinese New Year, Jenny will host a gathering for the physically challenged, “Due to the pandemic, I could not do it for a year. I will begin again on February 6 of 2022.”
Members of the public who would like to purchase the curry paste can visit Jenny’s Facebook page or contact her at 0125875407.