Traditionally NGOs raise funds through public donations or fundraising activities. These funds are used for development programs for the needy in the surrounding community. Some NGOs are not able to sustain themselves. They become financially dependent on well-wishers and suffer criticisms. NGOs are pressured to transform their strategies to stay relevant and sustainable financially for aid funds and facilities are becoming scarce.
Kiwanis Club of Muar was founded in 2005, a non-profit organization with our centre run entirely based on donations from the public to provide help and support to the parents of special children. This centre is specially catered for children with down syndrome, hyperactive, autistic, dyslexia, slow learning, depression, children with learning disabilities and especially those of single parents.
As a non-profit organization, we position ourselves as a catalyst to promote, educate, and strengthen parents, volunteers, specialists, school, private sectors, and government institutions to work together to help and serve these special children, with our motto “Touching People and Changing Lives”. We create a meaningful partnership with shared goals, vision, mission, clear governance, and workable plans that give values to the organizations.
Our charity project allows businesses to explore opportunities beyond monetary value, create social impact through centre visits, volunteering, product donation, asset sharing, corporate and employees’ donations. Our awareness projects include community involvement in our charity partnership projects and provide an opportunity to incubate innovative products and programs such as yoga training, zumba dancing, gardening, health checks, educational tours, sports, and donations of dry provisions for daily consumption. This new strategy of partnership projects engaging the public adds shared value to both the organizations and the community.
Project Result(s) / Impact(s)
Despite years of creating awareness projects on our own and due to limited information on special needs issues of these special children, communities have limited understanding, embracing, support, and integration of these children.
We discovered the abandonment of these special children where many are totally ignored by parents for, they have no access to institutions or centres nearby catering for the needs of special children. Some parents have abandoned their special children because of financial burdens. So, it is of utmost importance for us to conduct continuous public and partnership awareness campaigns to support these centres financially in our community.
With partnership projects, funding activities, and expertise from individuals, specialists, doctors, banks, religious centres, government agencies, and businesses enabled us to establish better-equipped facilities and support our centre which offered knowledge-based training to these special children, empowered volunteers, members, and teachers to add value and opportunities to serve better these special children.
We mobilized our teachers, children, and volunteers to visit various places and conduct activities to create awareness in public schools, shopping centres, charitable gatherings, and government programs to enable our children to learn, enjoy and interact with the outside world so that they don’t feel socially left out and face stigma and discrimination in their everyday lives. These long-term projects have lasting impacts on the lives of special children and curb societal intolerance and build community support and care.
Our Day Care Centre teachers train and educate the special children on living skills; the ability to care for themselves, hygiene, cleanliness, daily chores, singing, dancing, stage performance, gardening, teamwork, and communicating skills. Due to our dedicated teachers and the good performance of our children, we do receive frequent invitations from the public to perform in many social and charity events. The local press media is a great help. They publish our events for local reading. The children inspire the community. In turn, the community facilitates our club during fundraising activities.
The tagline for United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs) is “Leaving No One Behind.” Please explain how the nominated project helps to realize and advance the commitment of UNSDGs for the future. Highlight any other SDG(s) that your project has directly or indirectly created positive impact to people and society
Our program has helped many Malaysians regardless of race, religion and financial background. We hope that our Kiwanis projects will continue to enhance people’s lives and inspire others to be part of our good cause and leave no one behind during this pandemic.
- #4: Our ongoing projects help to ensure that every special child will have a holistic intervention program to help them to develop the skills they need to live a happy, healthy, and meaningful life.
- #10: We provide them a safe haven and conducive learning environment for their children. Whereas parents will have more space and time to work to develop and build their careers or business more confidently.
- #11: During this pandemic, we are planning to hold more social online projects with different layers of the communities and to inspire them to partner with us to reach out to society to support and to play a key role in helping the underprivileged families and single mothers.
Due to the success of our projects, many organizations and businesses are willing to help and cooperate. We believe these supporters will continue to help us financially to get us through the pandemic crisis.