OrphanCARE Gets RM1.05 million Boost from Yayasan Sime Darby
Funding will help the foundation reach out to more orphans and abandoned babies
Kuala Lumpur, 23 March 2015 – Three years ago, differently-abled Aleysha (not her real name) was left in the baby hatch at OrphanCARE Foundation’s (OrphanCARE) Petaling Jaya Centre without any documents. She was about 18 months old, with a cleft lip and only one arm.
Despite her condition, she was adopted by a loving family within a month. Thanks to OrphanCARE, Aleysha now lives happily with her adoptive parents and three other siblings. The family also plans for Aleysha to undergo a cleft lip corrective surgery and be fitted with a prosthetic limb.
Aleysha’s successful adoption is one of many heartwarming achievements of OrphanCARE which have not only made it possible for orphans and abandoned babies to grow up in a family, but also bring joy to the families intending to adopt the children.
Sharing the same passion as OrphanCARE and believing in the impact of their crusade, Yayasan Sime Darby (YSD), a strong advocate for the marginalised community has committed an RM1.05 million allocation for OrphanCARE for a three year duration starting November last year.
Mock cheque handover ceremony with OrphanCARE Trustee Pn. Nor’aini Hashim, OrphanCARE chairman YBhg. Tan Sri Faizah Mohd Tahir, Yayasan Sime Darby Governing Council Member Datin Paduka Zaitoon Dato’ Othman and Yayasan Sime Darby CEO, Pn. Hajah Yatela Zainal Abidin.
Yayasan Sime Darby Governing Council Member Datin Paduka Zaitoon Dato’ Othman and Chairman of OrphanCARE, YBhg. Tan Sri Faizah Mohd Tahir posing with a “baby” at the OrphanCARE baby hatch.
An OrphanCARE staff explaining how the baby hatch functions.
Founded in 2008 as a non-profit non-governmental organisation, OrphanCARE works closely with the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development (KPWKM) with a mission to give every orphan and abandoned baby a chance to be loved, cared for and raised in a family. Their commitment to facilitate the adoption process, hold awareness sessions involving local communities, as well as provide counselling and support for both mothers with unwanted pregnancies and adoptive parents, has played an important role to increase public awareness on the seriousness of baby abandonment in Malaysia and the severe repercussions on the rights of children to life, survival and development.
To date, the OrphanCARE has successfully facilitated the adoption of 113 abandoned babies and 15 orphans between the ages of three and 12 years old from various children’s charitable homes and counselled 68 biological mothers to raise their babies instead of giving them up.
In line with its Community & Health pillar to support sustainable initiatives that promotes the wellbeing and welfare of vulnerable children and women, YSD’s funding for the country’s first ever baby hatch owned by OrphanCARE will include salaries for seven social workers, rental of its headquarters in Petaling Jaya and expenses to organise outreach activities, community awareness programmes on baby abandonment and reproductive health talks at various locations within and outside of Klang valley area. The two other baby hatches are currently operating in Johor Bahru and Kota Bharu.
YSD Governing Council member Datin Paduka Zaitoon Dato’ Othman said YSD’s collaboration with OrphanCARE will reduce the number of abandoned babies, risk of child statelessness and grant the education as well as counselling support for women with unwanted pregnancies.
“The support for OrphanCARE is closely linked to our years of commitment in helping out the marginalised community. This project carries heavy importance in changing the lives of the young unwed mothers and their babies. OrphanCARE is not only addressing the symptom by placing the babies with their adoptive family, but is also going to the crux of the problem by engaging the public through its awareness programmes. This is a holistic approach reaching out to so many levels; the babies and their family, the young mothers, the society, NGOs as well as the policy makers.”
“With the increasing number of advocacy efforts undertaken by social workers funded by YSD, the public is better informed of the risks and consequences of abandoned babies. More women with unwanted pregnancies know where to go if they want to put up their children for adoption, instead of making decisions out of fear,” she added.
Expressing her gratitude to YSD for the assistance, OrphanCARE’s Chairman Tan Sri Faizah Mohd Tahir said such sponsorships encouraged the organisation to reach out with more initiatives and efforts.
“We are truly encouraged with the overwhelming support from individuals and corporate sponsors who believe in what we do. With YSD’s funding, we will be able to focus on strengthening the adoption and advocacy programmes, helping more couples adopt children and decreasing the number of children in institutions as they need to be raised in a family oriented environment,” said Tan Sri Faizah who was also the former Secretary General of KPWKM.
OrphanCARE has already established a database of 3,700 parents who are ready to adopt children. All registered parents are subject to a detailed screening process and only those physically, psychologically and financially able are deemed suitable for the adoption programme. The fast track adoption process by OrphanCARE is made easier with the ready pool of 700 qualified parents who already have the documentation required endorsed by the Social Welfare Department (JKM).
Besides OrphanCARE, under its Community & Health pillar, YSD also champions initiatives such as Cancer Research Initiatives Foundation (CARIF), Tabung YSD for the Underprivileged Coronary Patients at University Malaya Medical Centre, Diabetes Malaysia Children's Fund, Hospis Malaysia’s Patient Care Programme, YSD-YOKUK Sayang Home Care Programme – a HIV/AIDS palliative care initiative in Kelantan, Women's Aid Organisation, Yayasan Chow Kit, IDEAS Autism Centre, Malaysian AIDS Foundation and the Malaysian Federation for the Deaf among others.
Yayasan Sime Darby
Yayasan Sime Darby, or Sime Darby Foundation, was established in 1982 and is the primary driver of Sime Darby Berhad’s Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives.
The objectives of Yayasan Sime Darby are supported by its five pillars, namely: education; environment, community & health; youth & sports and arts & culture. While led by independent members of a Governing Council and managed by a dedicated team, Yayasan Sime Darby works closely with the Sime Darby Group, in areas of mutual interest.
Since its inception, Yayasan Sime Darby has awarded scholarships worth RM217 million to 2,519 students both in and outside Malaysia. It is supporting long term research projects of significant scientific value like the Stability of Altered Forest Ecosystems (SAFE) project which is the world’s largest ecological project, a joint effort with the Royal Society (The UK and Commonwealth Academy of Science). Yayasan Sime Darby is also actively involved in the development and improvements of sports in Malaysia namely track cycling, lawn bowling, cricket, tennis and golf. Under its community & health pillar, Yayasan Sime Darby supports initiatives to promote the well-being of disadvantaged people irrespective of race, culture, religion, creed or gender and works with established organisations to promote the development of arts and culture.
Issued by Group Communications & Corporate Affairs, Sime Darby Berhad
For further information, please contact:
Group Communications & Corporate Affairs
Sime Darby Berhad
Tel: 03-2711 3895 (Off), 019-299 0470 (HP)
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