THEY WILL ASK thee as to what they should spend on others. Say: "Whatever of your wealth you spend shall [first] be for your parents, and for the near of kin, and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer; and whatever good you do, verily, God has full knowledge thereof." - Al-Baqarah (2:215)

Monday, 20 November 2017

Education Sponsorship: After 10 years

November is coming to an end. Soon I will need to start with my back-to-school-shopping for the children of my needy clients. It's something I've been doing annually without fail for the past 10 years. Being the volunteer assigned to the highest number of clients, most of them from poor families, I had always been the one who had to bring the most number of children, usually between 30 to 40 of them, to go shopping. And since the families stay all over Perak, I've had to do separate shopping trips, covering Ipoh, Taiping, Kuala Kangsar, Kampar, Batu Gajah and Slim River. For someone who doesn't quite like shopping, that by itself is an achievement!

The sponsorship programme has been on-going for 10 whole years now. Over the 10 year period, 65 children had been sponsored, RM305K were collected from generous sponsors, and slightly over RM290K spent to date, not only for the annual back-to-school needs, but also various other schooling needs like monthly bus fares and pocket money.

So, what have become of the sponsored children?

Well, some 30 something of them are still in school. A few dropped out of school despite the assistance. But given that the success stories generally outweigh the dropouts, I must say the education sponsorship programme obviously met its objective in ensuring that poverty does not deprive these children of basic education at the very least. It's a welcomed bonus when many of the children decided to go a step further... either to further their academic studies in universities, polytechnics, colleges... or to go for skill training courses to provide them with better job opportunities.

We already have a few who successfully completed their certificates and diplomas, and are currently working to enable them to help support their respective families. But the best news this year is, in its 10th year, the sponsorship programme has finally produced its first ever university graduate. Yes, a degree holder finally. And with more of them currently in various local universities doing various courses, we should expect more university graduates from among the sponsored children in years to come.

Of course we can't expect each and every single sponsored child to graduate with a degree or diploma. Some are simply not academically inclined at all. But the fact that they agreed to go for vocational or skill-training courses (instead of opting to look for a job immediately after SPM like what they had initially planned to do), can still be considered a success story for the sponsorship programme.

Having been involved with the running of the programme since day one, the satisfaction of seeing one by one of the sponsored children getting their certs, diplomas and degrees, made it worth all the effort. With education in hand, comes better job opportunities. With better jobs opportunities, a brighter future awaits them. And THAT is the reason behind the education sponsorship programme.

Although these children aren't mine, I can't help but feel like a proud mother every time I hear of their success stories. I certainly hope there will be many more success stories in future. It helps keep me motivated.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sis,
Could you provide details of bank,name &I ac.no to those wanting to contribute?

Pi Bani said...

Any contributions can be banked into our account as follows:
Persatuan Buddies Ipoh Perak
RHB 20806100029106
Kindly email us at hivbuddiesipoh@yahoo.com once amount is banked in/transfered indicating purpose of donation (children education fund).