On 16 December 2019, 46 children from Rumah Charis visited UCSI University for a half day of food, fun, games and a little bit of learning. The children were excited and eager to be at the University as it was a change from their regular routine at the home.
Rumah Charis is a non-profit Christian organisation which provides care and a suitable environment for orphans and unprivileged, neglected, single parent children. Its aim is to nurture and help them continue in their education while encouraging them emotionally.
The day started off with a personal hygiene talk by UCSI’s Faculty of Business and Information Science lecturers Shakerin Ismail and Marcia Edna Santhanarajan. They gave seven tips on keeping clean including bathing and washing hair, brushing teeth, washing hands after using the toilet, washing hands before preparing meals and before eating as well as the importance of washing and wearing dry clothes.
After the talk, the children were divided into groups where they participated in many fun and challenging physical as well as mental activities. For instance, they had to throw the ball to hit the target and also complete various mazes and puzzles. There were six stations for the older children and one station for those below 7 years old and the time allocated for each station was 10 minutes.
The children had a sumptuous lunch of Kenny Rogers chicken, nasi lemak and an apple each. This was followed by the distribution of goodie bags filled with socks, water bottles and some small gifts to the children. Prizes were also given to the two groups who accumulated the most points in the station activities. Lastly, group photos were taken to commemorate the occasion.
Essentially, the event was held for UCSI staff and students to engage with the community, especially underprivileged children promoting the mindset that “we are all equal” despite our different backgrounds.
The event was also a chance for the children to experience a different environment, other than what they are used to. More than anything, the games and activities helped the children not to feel lonely and to mix freely.
“Community service is part of an individual’s responsibility. What we have, we need to share with those who deserve it. The Accounting and Finance department has made it a point to organise such events on yearly basis,” said Head of Accounting and Finance department, Radha Nair.
“Seeing these kids really touched our hearts. We will definitely continue to organise more of these kinds of events in the near future. Our next goal is to instil the importance of community service in the minds of our students too. This year we have engaged 9 to 10 students. Next year, our plan is to encourage student clubs to organise these events as part of their club events,” she added.
According to Rumah Charis coordinator, Jackson Pau, Malaysia has a long way to go in terms of social work. However, the home strives to provide a way to change the children’s lifestyles and stop the vicious cycle that they are caught up in.
“It is all about reaching out to the children and giving love. This is how society will change and Malaysia will be a better nation,” he said.
Representatives from Worldgate Express Services Sdn Bhd were also present at the event as part of their CSR activities. Overall, the event was a success as the children enjoyed the activities lined up for them while the volunteers had a chance to contribute, albeit in a small way, to the welfare of the children.