Lin sent me a text message on Sunday asking if her children would still be getting any assistance for their schooling needs. Last 2 years I took her 2 younger children out shopping but I had been quite busy this year with so many additions to the list of children needing schooling assistance, it had been some time since I last contacted Lin.
Knowing that I may not have the time to bring all the families out separately as I usually did in previous years, I figured this year I’d try something I had never done before – get a few families to shop together at the same place at the same time, especially those from out of Ipoh.
So I decided on a supermarket in a town easily accessible to a few families within the same district and sent out text messages to Nuri, Rin, Mrs K and Lin. They all agreed to bring their children and meet me at the supermarket on Thursday at 10 am.
Then last night, I received a text message from Imran, asking me how to get help for his children’s schooling. I’ve met Imran before at the hospital but I’ve already assigned him to another volunteer. He had already bought his children’s uniforms using the RM100 per child received from the government, but there were so many things they still needed and his small business had not been doing too well of late, mainly because of his poor health. In fact, he had not been paying his rental for the past 3 months.
Since Imran stays in the same district as the other clients I’m taking for their back-to-school shopping on Thursday, I told Imran to bring his children to the same place at the same time.
So yep, on Thursday I’ll be doing some back-to-school shopping for 12 children from 5 families. God help me please…
On Monday I received a call from an unfamiliar number. It was actually from a public phone. And the caller was Jah’s husband (yeah, the same guy I mentioned in my blog posting on 5th December). He told me Jah had delivered their baby, not in Ipoh but in Teluk Intan. I was quite surprised really, I didn’t even know until last week that Jah was pregnant, and suddenly this week she had already delivered. And in Teluk Intan? Jah usually comes for her appointments in Ipoh (she stays in another town, neither Ipoh nor Teluk Intan) and so I was wondering why they sent her to this other hospital. “Yang jumpa doctor untuk sakit satu lagi tu pun dah tukar Teluk Intan ke?” I asked. I assumed the husband would know about her appointments in Ipoh. “Sakit satu lagi? Apa benda?” he asked. Alamak, I didn’t dare say anything further. The line got cut off anyway as Jah’s hubby ran out of coins for the public phone. But later at night he sent me a text message to say that Jah had delivered a baby boy.
I was on clinic duty this morning and so I decided to ask SN about Jah. SN knew Jah was pregnant but was surprised herself when I told her that Jah had already delivered in Teluk Intan. According to SN, when Jah went for her pregnancy test at the district hospital in the town where she stays, they referred her to Teluk Intan instead of Ipoh. But she still comes to Ipoh for her appointment at the ID clinic. It would have been much easier for the departments (O&G and ID clinic) to liaise with each other if Jah went to the same hospital instead of 2 different hospitals.
Reading the status updates of a few friends on FB about their children getting offers to fully residential schools, I decided to check on Maya’s daughter. Maya told me that they had received the SMS from MOE informing her that her daughter got a place in a residential school in Perak but they’d have to go online to accept the offer first. They don’t have internet access at home, so getting online meant having to go to a cyber cafe or a friend’s house with internet access. Since I was already online when I called Maya, I offered to do so for them and asked her to SMS me her daughter’s UPSR index number which is required when we check the offer status online.
Maya immediately sent me her daughter’s index number and IC number as well. I guess she wasn’t too confident when I told her I only needed the index number. I immediately went to the MOE website and accepted the offer on their behalf. Now they’d need to wait for the official letter from the ministry.
Am so happy that finally one of “my children” gets offered to go to a fully residential school. I hope the new school will provide a better environment for her to excel in her studies. All the best to you girl! Don’t you worry about your schooling expenses… you’re still under our education sponsorship programme.