Hello to all out there!Greetings from Penang, Malaysia!
I am Sarah Abdullah – Malaysian – an ex-English school teacher. I am with the Penang Community Concerned Organisation (PCCO) as Community Development Project Officer. PCCO is a Non Profit Organisation –managed by an active group of professionals and a group of urban poor women in our local community. PCCO activities are carried out via public donations/sponsorship support by local politicians and small charity work to raise funds from time to time. At PCCO women and youth areengaged in a variety of academic, social and educational programmes. PCCO serves as a safe and healthy platform for women/youth to excel. Most programmes focus on educational assistance, leadership skills, team building strategies, career exploration, cultural celebrations, field trips and also provides opportunities for women/youth to become involved in community affairs.
I am here calling for your strong support and crowdfunding to start an education project early January 2019 for the good and urgent cause of the urban poor children in our local community. This one (1) year long education project (English Reading & Writing Programme) is for children age 4+5+6 residing at the Housing For The Poor in the heart of Georgetown Penang.
The urgency for this program is because English is deteriorating in the Malaysian Education System and it needs to be enhanced.Today, parents are losing confidence in the education system and a majority of them cannot afford to send their children to private schools. The worst is - no competence among the teachers. We do not have quality English teachers in schools today! Flip-flop policies are introduced and implemented from time to time, confusing students and angering parents including teachers.
Occasionally the media reports actions and initiatives are taken by the Ministry in order to improve English among Malaysian students, however the attribution is only focused on teachers and improving the school environment. Our Malaysian education system will continue failing if we don’t do anything about the root of the problem. Sad to note – 85% of our school children are struggling with English at the moment. May it be primary, secondary, college or university graduates.
Recent news reports that poor command of English is among major reasons for Malaysian graduates unemployment in Malaysia today. Study reveals the root cause of the problem is due to poor emphasis on the language in early childhood education. At most educational levels prior to the tertiary level, the chances of learning or even mastering the English language are limited as there is only one English subject in the curriculum.
In the light of this very sad / disappointing situation, some greedy education institution owners take advantage to gain huge profits. English Reading & Writing Programmes for childrenmushroomed overnight all over Malaysia. Parents were pressured with heavy fees, rules and regulations. This is another strain to urban poor mothers - many stop sending their children after a few months – could not afford the fees / no place to turn to for solutions! Thus the poor children are deprived of the opportunity. Everything is proceeding as usual, while the private institution owners happily hold children’s education hostage — they know that parents will eventually pay whatever the institution wants!
As a caring society, it is our duty to help the underpriveledge children. They deserve equal rights in education and we – a team of retired ex-English school teachers have come to a conclusion making some positive changes to ensure that these urban poor children are NOT deprived of their rights to education and that English is NOT pushed aside!
The Beneficiaries of this education project are NOT only the children participating in this project - but also their mothers! Health & Nutrition Consultants will be invited to hold talks once a month to educate the mothers on children Health/Nutrition and the danger of obesity. Once every alternate month English Holiday Camp and Cultural Activities will be organized. International school students in Penang will be invited to participate in this programme to enhance/improveEnglish proficiency fluently and efficiently among our children while the cultural activities open doors for good knowledge and better understanding of both cultures.
This crowdfunding will cover expenses as allowances for qualified facilitators, Asst. Facilitators, Honorarium for Consultants, Specialists, Speakers, Support Groups, Internship, Children Breakfast Program, Premises Rental, purchase of sports items, educational books/materials, monthly birthday celebrations for children engaged in this project, transportation expenses for field trips, cross cultural programmes, meetings, talks , workshop, secreatarial / administration etc…etc….
Children of today are the leaders of tomorrow and education is a very important weapon to prepare children for their future roles as leaders of the community."Nelson Mandela
Together, we can do more than shine a spotlight on the importance of early childhood development. We can commit to action. We look forward your strong support for the good cause and future of our urban poor chidren.
Service to humanity is service to god!