KDU Brings Corporate Social Responsibility To Whole New Level By Extending Help To Neighbouring Country

KDU student volunteers serving the home cooked meals to the children of the Emirate Orphanage House. KDU student volunteers diligently preparing the ingredients to cook the signature mouth-watering dish for all Malaysians, Nasi Lemak.
KDU’s SHTCA Senior Lecturer, Datin Puteri Juliana Binti Abdul Aziz, handing over a charity box to the manager of Emirate Orphanage House, Ustaz Useng Walong. Group photo of KDU Student Volunteers with the residents of Emirate Orphanage House.
Fuelled by compassionate, benevolent, and concerned sentiments regarding the fate of children who have lost their parents in the natural disasters that hit Thailand devastatingly such as the tsunami and widespread flooding, KDU’s School of Hospitality, Tourism, and Culinary Arts (SHTCA) conducted an international educational study and corporate social responsibility trip to Ibnuauf Foundation and Emirate Orphanage House in Satun Province, Thailand on the 22 April 2017. More than 50 students from the Bachelor of Hospitality Management and Bachelor of Culinary programmes, as well as 3 lecturers and a staff from KDU, were involved in the international educational study and CSR tour to provide some relief and community service to the local orphanage.

The Emirate Orphanage House has been established for 15 years and is home to 55 orphans from Satun and other nearby surrounding provinces. This orphanage was supported by the Emirates Airline for the first five years of its operations before being handed to the local charity of the Satun community. The orphanage, without the support from any organisations, is run by Ustaz Hj. Abdullah Akem and several other local committee members, whose tasks also include fundraising to ensure its sustainability. The orphanage organises the Day of Emirate Orphanage Charity annually to fundraise and foster a good relationship with the locals and visitors.

The objectives of the trip were to provide KDU students with first-hand experience in organising activities at an international level which involves understanding of the immigration, visa, and dietary requirements of various students from different backgrounds and nationalities, as well as to give students ample opportunity to work on this particular CSR project. With the help of highly established organisations such as Emirates Airline, the founder and developer of the orphanage, Tourism Authority of Thailand and Thai Embassy Kuala Lumpur, FAMA and Mydin in contributing towards this CSR project, the students were able to execute their tasks at an international level that adds to their credibility and personal achievement.
Upon arrival at the Emirate Orphanage House, KDU representatives were welcomed warmly by the children and orphanage staff. The CSR project carried out at the local orphanage were executed by the group of KDU students themselves while being closely supervised by the lecturers. Some of the activities include cooking meals for the orphans, baking assorted cookies and cleaning up the orphanage house’s vicinity. KDU students were very fortunate to be able to do all the activities together with the children which gave them the chance to interact and demonstrate their skills which they acquired from their sessions in class. They even shared some useful tips with the children on how to bake delicious cookies and the ingredients used to make them. The children of the orphanage house were delighted and had a lot of fun together with the KDU students.

As the activities were carried out together with the residents of the local orphanage, everyone was able to participate in the process of preparing Malaysia’s most loved dish, Nasi Lemak, served with traditional chili paste with anchovies, boiled eggs, fresh cucumber, and spicy fried chicken. The student volunteers took charge of the kitchen and elected some personnel amongst themselves as the head chef to closely monitor the quality of food prepared. The children were served buffet style, and everyone was delighted with the tasty and scrumptious meal cooked by the students.

Besides carrying out various activities with the children, KDU students also took the opportunity to hand over the financial aid, charity boxes and goodie bags sponsored by generous individuals and organisations, as well as through fundraising events held prior to the CSR trip. The charity boxes contained food items, toiletries such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash, bar soaps, and toothpaste, as well as linens such as bed sheets, towels and robes while the individual goodie bags saw the children receiving clothing, stationeries and personal hygiene items. The smiles on the faces of children when they received the gifts and presents were enough to lift the fatigue and exhaustion of KDU student volunteers, for all the effort they have put in making the CSR project a successful event.

Datin Puteri Juliana Binti Abdul Aziz, a senior lecturer at KDU’s School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts and lead lecturer for this CSR trip, shared her thoughts, “We hope that this CSR initiative would be a start of something new and positive for all the students. CSR projects like these should not be a one-off, as there are plenty of opportunities to bring good to those who are really in need.” She added, “Our students did a wonderful job in making the CSR project a success as we managed to deliver our best in ensuring that the children in this orphanage house obtained the financial assistance given by our generous sponsors and had some good fun together with our students.”

One of the student volunteers Cypril Loi Kwong Ching, who is currently in Year 2 of the Bachelor of Culinary Management (Major in Culinary Operation) programme, explained, “We started preparing for this trip right after the Chinese New Year holiday where our lecturer gave us a list of items to be collected for the orphans and delegated jobs to each group in class to get sponsorships. We managed to get sponsors of the requested items and funds for the event from donation and through fundraising activities.”

Cypril added, “There were 3 major fundraising activities carried out; sourcing of sponsorship from organisations, breakfast sale and also through a t-shirt sale. All proceeds went directly to the financial aid given to the orphanage.

Continuing, he said, “This trip has given me a whole new level of perspective on CSR as it not only benefits those who are in need but also made me realise the importance of providing help to people without asking anything in return. The new experience from the exposure of international culture is something educational as well.”

According to Ham You Kyung, a second-year student in Bachelor of Culinary Management (Major in Baking and Pastry), “This CSR project has definitely benefitted me as this is my first time, together with my team members, of planning, participating and executing a CSR project outside of Malaysia. I felt the achievement and it was really something special as it made me realise that it’s not only big organisations that can manage CSR projects such as this, but also a small group of driven individuals.”

Kyung also added, “At first I thought that this is just an ordinary CSR trip but later I found out that it was very challenging, in terms of organisation. Although my classmates and I had to go through hardships and obstacles, I really think that it was a good experience for us to organise the whole CSR programme and it is truly meaningful that we have managed to deliver what we had planned.” Aside from the overwhelming satisfaction, Kyung and the rest of her classmates have learned a very important lesson and that is to be grateful for what we have and give more to those who are in need as no one has become poor by giving.