Pix for representational purpose only/BERNAMAPix
MAKING a living is usually a challenging undertaking for the visually impaired.
This highlights a need for us, as a community, to support those experiencing visual impairment and raise awareness around the challenges they face.
Recognising this need, Heriot-Watt University Malaysia (HWUM) students under the EmPOWER programme initiated several projects from January to May, to raise funds for the Malaysian Association for the Blind (MAB) and to create awareness of the challenges that the visually impaired face every day.
One of the projects was a table tennis tournament.
In early March, a student group “Leading Light” partnered with the HWUM table tennis club to co-host an exciting and successful table tennis tournament at the university’s multi-purpose hall.
The event saw a good turnout, with more than 30 participants signing up, and a supportive audience added many cheers to the already electric atmosphere of the thrilling contests.
HWUM student Yong Wai Loon won first prize in the competition.
He said he was proud to be a part of this event and to create a positive impact for the visually impaired in Malaysia.
Through this event and other activities, these students raised RM3,878 for the MAB.
The students involved in the initiative felt proud of their significant contribution, acknowledging the positive influence they had within their community.
A bazaar was also organised by the students. They set up two booths at Tamarind Square in the vibrant city of Cyberjaya.
This prestigious shopping mall, known for its exquisite tropical gardens and impressive architectural design, provided an ideal setting for this bazaar.
The event took place on March 11 and 12, where students sold handcrafted items, baked goodies and a variety of delicious cuisine which included lasagne, nasi minyak, brownies, cream puffs and lemonade.
The students also organised games and activities to create awareness for the visually impaired in this imposing mall.
Through this bazaar and other activities, the students successfully raised RM3,026 for MAB.
It also allowed students to develop crucial entrepreneurial skills such as adaptability and creativity.
In early February 2023, HWUM students organised a blindfold challenge on campus.
More than 35 participants registered for this challenge.
These participants were blindfolded with a cloth and given a firsthand experience of the difficulties encountered by the visually impaired in attempting tasks such as brushing their teeth, ironing clothes, making sandwiches and applying lipstick.
This challenge opened the eyes of the participants and raised awareness about the challenges a visually impaired person would have to face in their day-to-day life.
Hence, this challenge successfully promoted inclusivity, understanding and support for the visually impaired community, taking a significant step towards creating a more compassionate society.
HWUM students raised RM8,000 for the MAB this year through all these projects and activities.
Through these activities, students had opportunities to learn beyond the classroom, to think critically and to practise effective communication, thus fostering personal growth and preparing them to contribute meaningfully to society.
The students’ efforts inspired others to make a real difference in the community.
Together, we made a significant change in the lives of the visually impaired.
As a person who had been personally involved in these projects, I would like to acknowledge and thank Prof Mushtak Al-Atabi and Prof Dennis Wong, the Provost and Deputy Provost of HWUM, for their leadership and guidance around this noble cause.
I would also like to express gratitude, especially to the Head of Heriot-Watt Global College Malaysia (HWGCM) Jasmine Low, to Renuga T. Rethinam and Rohaya Daud, who are staff from HWGCM, and to Marques Jeevan Menon, the EmPOWER programme director.
Even in these challenging times of economic uncertainties, it is crucial for all of us to remain committed to supporting disabled and disadvantaged communities in Malaysia. Let us stand together and create a future where everyone has equal opportunities and equal capacity to thrive.
Dr Lee J. Peter
Heriot-Watt University Malaysia
Ads by: Memento Maxima Digital Marketing
SPACE RESERVE FOR ADVERTISTMENT