Category Archives: Community

Charity Lunch


Wira Association of Malaysia

Some 200 people, consisting of children with special needs, senior citizens and single mothers from 20 welfare homes, were treated to lunch by the Wira Association of Malaysia. In attendance were Dato’ Hajjah Rusnah Kassim, Executive Councillor for Women’s Development, Family, Social Welfare and National Integration and invited guests.

This fourth annual “Majlis Mesra Muhibbah Bersama Kanak-Kanak dan Dewasa Rumah Kebajikan”, a significant welfare-cum-community service of the association, was held at YMCA Ipoh recently.

The association organises memorial services annually for those who sacrificed their lives in the defense of Malaya during World Wars 1 and 2, the Burma/Thailand Death Railways and the Indonesian Confrontation.

This year it organised, for the first time, a service at the historical battle site near the Gemencheh Bridge in Negeri Sembilan. Eighty two Australian soldiers died at the spot while fighting the advancing Japanese Imperial Army during World War 2.

At the sit-down lunch, guests were entertained with dances and songs as well as a ukulele performance by two American volunteers. Each home received a cheque for RM200 from the association. Rusnah thanked the President of Wira Association of Malaysia, Dato’ R. Thambipillay and his members for the charity works they had done. “The government can only do so much,” she said.

Beginning November of this year orphans and senior citizens, who are a resident of a home registered with the Welfare Department, are eligible for an annual stipend of RM350 each. The money, to be paid in one lump sum to each home, is to be utilised on education and the basic needs of the individuals. Presently, 31 orphanages and 28 old folks’ homes are registered with the welfare department in Perak.


Come Giggle Nibble for the Lovable


Come Giggle Nibble for the Lovable2

In November 2012, Soroptimist International Ipoh (SI Ipoh), identified an area around Ipoh where underprivileged children from a problematic environment and some broken homes were seen loitering around aimlessly. They seemed easy prey to negative influences. Wanting to make a difference and a meaning in their lives, SI Ipoh set up the Edufun Centre manned by a retired school teacher, where children, aged 6 to 14 are encouraged to come and be helped in their education, social and moral values, besides providing them with nutrition.

In just one year of operation, there has been a marked improvement in these children. From being listless and apathetic, they now can’t wait to come to the Centre, are very eager to learn, have improved in their school grades, are polite and well-mannered and very lovable indeed!

Edufun is a non-racial, non-denominational and apolitical centre for any child who wants to be helped. In order to sustain this Edufun Centre, as well as other worthy projects, SI Ipoh are appealing to the people of Ipoh to support their efforts in enabling them to reach out and help the future generation become good and useful adults and citizens of our country.


To support this and many other activities, they are organising a fundraising dinner with the theme: Come Giggle, Nibble for the Lovable on Saturday November 30.

A fun evening of entertainment has been lined up with performances by the Instant Café Theatre featuring Jo Kukathas and Patrick Teoh and local guest artistes. Members of the public and companies wishing to expand their CSR outreach may purchase tables and or take advertisements in the souvenir programme for the event. Individual tickets are also available.

SI Ipoh committee
SI Ipoh committee

SI Ipoh is a branch of Soroptimist International, a worldwide organisation for women in management and the professions working through service projects to assist underprivileged women and children.

Projects they have undertaken include training and organising single mothers to do housecleaning work for income; facilitating full day seminars to train school counsellors on child sexual abuse. They have so far covered six districts in Perak, reaching about 500 schools and benefitting close to 100,000 school students from this OK Tak Ok informational seminar. Other projects involve medical health camps; a road survival programme on how to stay safe on the road from accidents, road bullies, con artists and many more; and raising awareness on “Stop violence against women”.


Neighbourhood Watch to Curb Crime


Neighbourhood Watch

The residents of Ipoh Garden and Canning Garden are united in their quest for a clean, friendly and crime-free neighbourhood. They subscribe to the idea that establishing a neighbourhood watch is not about spying on one’s neighbour or wanting to be nosy. Such a thing has been in existence since the 1980s when Rukun Tetangga was vogue. The government-sponsored programme went on for some time but got mired in bureaucracy and officialdom and eventually faded into oblivion.

However, with criminal activities on the rise within the city, reintroducing the scheme is not only practical but a necessity. Considering it as a bold step forward, the residents of the two housing estates pooled their resources and started their own neighbourhood watch.

The initiative named, “Ipoh Garden Zone 8 Neighbourhood Watch”, was officially launched on Tuesday, October 22 at its base in Jalan Serindik, Ipoh Garden. There to do the honours was Dato’ Abdul Wahab bin Dato’ Seri Azizul Hassan, Orang Kaya-kaya Panglima Kinta Seri Amar Bangsa DiRaja who is Chairman of the Perak State Liaison of the Malaysian Crime Prevention Foundation. The ceremony was witnessed by over a hundred residents who had braved inclement weather to provide event coordinator, Christopher Netto, the much-needed support.

Zone 8 covers over 500 houses stretching from Jalan Pekeliling Tasek to Jalan Murai and Jalan Tasek to Jalan Dato’ Lau Pak Khuan.


Corporate Trustee The Ultimate Protection


Corporate TrusteeIt is said that life insurance is like a parachute. Therefore, many breadwinners of urban families in Malaysia have bought life insurance to protect their families from the many uncertainties of life.

Ironically, before the Insurance Act 1996 was replaced by the Financial Services Act 2013, many life insurance policy holders have appointed themselves as trustees of their own policies.

This didn’t make sense at all, as to file a life insurance claim, the policyholder has to either be suffering from a critical illness, is senile, in a coma, permanently disabled, or dead. How good is a trustee if he or she was in such a condition as described above?

Under this new Act, which came into effect on July 1, policyholders can no longer name themselves as the trustee to their own life policies. This applies to new policies but existing policies may be affected as well should the policyholder die without making proper back up plans.

During a talk held at a leading hotel in Ipoh recently, Saw Leong Aun, Group Managing Director of Rockwills Corp Sdn Bhd, explained to participants the potential risks involved in relation to this change. He described at length, Schedule 10 of the Financial Services Act 2013 and its implications on policyholders.

The potential risks include the inability of the surviving spouse to manage a large sum of money, the spouse remarrying before the children reached the legal age of 18, or even death of the spouse who is the automatic trustee, if there was no proper appointment made.

What if the individual trustee was biased, or if there was a special-needs beneficiary involved?

In cases like these, the purpose of taking out life insurance is defeated, as the insurance monies may not go to the persons the policyholder had intended it to go to, or it could even be held by the public trustee, Amanah Raya Bhd.

Saw also explained the differences between a direct nomination and licensed corporate trustee, and how assigning the policy to a corporate trustee is the ultimate protection for life insurance money.

Major advantages of an insurance trust are naming of substitute beneficiaries, instructions to distribute insurance funds periodically, and customised payment schedule for each individual beneficiary to prevent squandering or being conned by others.

While the onus is on responsible insurance agents or estate planners to explain this new policy to their clients, those who are holding a life insurance policy and have appointed him or herself as trustee of the policy are advised to make the necessary changes to comply with the new rule and protect their insurance monies.

Incidentally, Rockwills Corp Sdn Bhd is the number one financial and estate planning company in Malaysia. The company is in a position to advise anyone who requires further information.


Disabled Army Veterans Feted


Disabled Army Veterans FetedA former sergeant with the Royal Malay Regiment recalled a painful incident during an operation in the Gubir jungles of Kedah in the late 1970s. “It was sometime in 1979. My battalion was on a search and destroy mission. Our platoon was atop a mountain when we received orders to do a sweep along a ridge. It was during the sweep that I stepped on a bobby trap laid by terrorists on a track which we had taken,” said retired Sergeant Abdul Jalil Sahli, 58, to Ipoh Echo. “I lost my left foot, as a result. In spite of the loss, I continued in the army until my retirement in 1995.”

Sergeant Abdul Jalil was among a group of 84 disabled army veterans who were feted at a ceremony held in their honour on the occasion of HQ 2 Brigade’s 58th Anniversary. The Ipoh-based infantry brigade has been celebrating its formation day in September of each year. And each time the event is held, former soldiers are invited to attend as a form of recognition for their services to the army.

Brig-Gen Dato’ Md Dzahir Abd Rashid and senior officers of the brigade were on hand to entertain the invitees. The ceremony was held at the brigade headquarters mess hall. Dzahir thanked the retirees and reminded them that their sacrifices to King and Country were not forgotten.

Each received a RM500 cash donation. “It’s the brigade’s way of thanking these veterans for their services,” said the brigade commander to Ipoh Echo.


“We can do it…bersama-sama!”


The spirit of teamwork and muhibbah – the way we were, the way it should be – beautifully captured in this photo taken during the Brooks-KRI Annual Run 2013 on October 6 at The Haven, Ipoh. More than 1000 runners of all races and nationalities participated in this much-loved event organised by Kelab Roadrunners Ipoh. It was flagged off by Ipoh Mayor, Dato’ Haji Roshidi bin Hashim.

We can do it – bersama-sama

Beginning of a New Century


More than eight hundred former Michaelian’s gathered in the basketball court on the grounds of their Alma Mater to usher in the 2nd Century of St Michael’s Institution (SMI).

Michaelian Jubilarians
Michaelian Jubilarians

The school had celebrated its 100th years of its founding last year. Hence the theme for the night was ‘The Beginning of a New Century…the end of an Era’.

oma 132

As is tradition, the annual dinner of the Old Michaelian Association (OMA) is held on the last Saturday of September each year. OMA President Adrian Tsen in his address welcomed the former students “to another evening of Michaelian fellowship”.

Michaelian fellowship
Michaelian fellowship

This year there were 90 recipients for the school’s jubilee certificates. SMI Principal Madam Loh Wei Seng was one of them, having left the school 40 years ago. All recipients after receiving their certificates from Dato Bro Vincent Corkery fondly sang their school song with gusto in true Michaelian spirit of fellowship.

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Sum Meets Residents


Ipoh Police Chief, ACP Sum ChangKeong, attended a meet-the-people session organised by the Rakan Cop Menglembu Branch recently. The session, held at the town’s night market, was attended by state assemblywoman, Ms Lim Pie Har, community leaders and a large number of Menglembu residents.

Sum meets residents

Sum spoke at length on the objective of the meeting. “It’s the Police’s way of extending our friendship to the people of Menglembu,” he said. He hoped that the residents would in return give their fullest co-operation for mutual benefit. He briefed the audience on the security situation and the actions taken by the police to combat crime in Menglembu.

The function ended with a dinner hosted by the Rakan Cop Menglembu branch. After dinner Sum and his senior officers walked around the night market and got acquainted with both traders and customers.

Having face-to-face contact with locals is one of the ways the Police have adopted, to tackle crime within an area. Known officially as High Profile Policing, it involves senior police officers meeting the people through informal meet-the-people sessions such as this.


Heart Wellness Camp 2013


With the theme, “Take The Road To A Healthy Heart”, Pantai Hospital Ipoh, in collaboration with the Parent-Teacher Associations of three schools, namely SJK(C) Yuk Choy, SJK(C) Ave Maria and SJK(C) Sam Tet, organised  heart wellness camps in Ipoh and Malim Nawar. This is the fourth consecutive year that the hospital has organised the programme with non-governmental organisations.

Heart Wellness Camp 2013

The camp in Ipoh, held on World Heart Day on Sunday, September 29 within the grounds of SJK (C) Yuk Choy, was launched by Azizul Kama Abdul Aziz, political secretary to the Second Finance Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Husni Hanadzlah. The camp in Malim Nawar was held on Sunday, October 13.

The Ipoh camp saw the participation of over a thousand people consisting of school children, teachers, parents and the public. The focus was on cardiovascular disease prevention. It highlighted actions that can be taken from a young age to reduce the risk of the disease. Some of the activities at the camp included medical talks on stroke and diabetes, a medical exhibition and free health screenings.

In line with the theme of the programme, and to encourage a healthy lifestyle, the camp kicked off with a mass exercise.

Organising Chairman, Albert Looi, said, “We hope that through these activities, individuals will know of ways to reduce the risk of heart diseases in themselves and their loved ones.”


Invalid Lawrence Passes Away


Invalid Lawrence asses away

The second of the four invalid Francis brothers passed away on September 19. Lawrence Francis, 34, was a cerebral palsy patient along with his three other siblings. Elder brother, Morgan Francis, 36, died in his sleep in May 2010. They, with the exception of Patrick Francis, 41, who moves about in a wheelchair, are confined to bed as they are incapable of bodily movements due to their conditions.

The Francis brothers were adopted by the Y’s Men’s Club of Ipoh since 2007. The club sees to the siblings’ needs such as: food, clothing and  limited financial support. Members of the club visited the bereaved family recently to hand over some much needed necessities.

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