This project began in 2015 with the goal of building a total of 12 libraries in Orang Asli villages to encourage the children in these villages to read. In an attempt to realize this goal, we have till date constructed 10 libraries in Orang Asli villages to provide these children with educational materials. We hope that by constructing and outfitting these libraries that we are able to instill a passion for reading within these children that could translate into greater academic achievement. Our aim is to be able to provide these children with the same kind of facilities as their peers in the city.
In order to make this happen, the foundation began by collaborating with local Orang Asli communities to build the first Budimas Children’s Library in the Orang Asli Settlement of Bukit Kepong in Port Dickson, Seremban. We hope that the construction of this library would encourage the children of the Orang Asli community to develop an interest in reading, and that could spark an interest in education and to keep them interested in attending school.
Project Results(s)/ Impact(s)
The result of this project is illustrated by the significant development of these Orang Asli children. Firstly, we have been able to reach out to approximately 1,000 children with the construction of these libraries.
The libraries have become a place where the children can do their homework together with the help of the librarian. We have been able to introduce a degree of structure to the lives of these children and as a result many of the concerns expressed prior to the construction of these libraries have been solved such as a lack of interest in academics among others.
In 2016, we introduced classes such as singing, reading & robotics on a trial basis. The children’s feedback we received from the children was positive and they were thrilled by the classes. These classes were then extended to every weekend so that the children can continue learning these extra skills.
In October 2016, Budimas began a robotics class for 20 selected Orang Asli Children as part of a 12 week long programme. The children that were given the opportunity to join this programme were those who showed passion and commitment towards education and the library activities. During the programme they learned how to build robots (with Lego as structure and programmable motor parts), as well as learn about functioning and programming.
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This is the main goal of Budimas Education Charity Fund, to provide access to education courses, materials and facilities to the children of rural and poor villages to build interest towards academic learning as well as to encourage these children to remain in school. Budimas believes that education is the way out of poverty and by instilling the importance of education in the children. Our message to these children is that education can transform their lives for a better future.
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
It is no secret that the path to success is through a good quality of education and that is what we at Budimas strive to provide to these children from the Orang Asli settlements. The construction of these libraries aims to provide these children with the educational facilities to complement their national education system. We believe that by creating a conducive and welcoming environment around the library these children will be inclined to spend more of their time there.
They will be able to do their school work and be able create a community of students among their neighbors. We have filled these libraries with many genres of books in order to capture the interest of these children. We hope that by surrounding these children with interesting titles they may be inclined to pick up and book and start reading. We hope that this will spark their love for reading and learning.
All work and no play will not give you the desired results, especially from children which is why the libraries also provide fun and interactive classes and games. Budimas has arranged for a number of classes for these children and the classes which receive positive feedback are continued. We are acutely aware that to capture the attention of a child is not the easiest of tasks which is why we reward feedback.
These classes give these children something to look forward to on the weekends and also complement their education in school. The classes are conducted by qualified professionals. We have also provided the children with fun educational tools like board games and tablets. The children learn the value of working together by playing these games. It also gives them the opportunity to experiment with technology and learn how things work. Educational movies are also easily accessible on these tablets.
The construction of these libraries have also had a positive impact on the Orang Asli community. We select a librarian from the pool of locals and we empower them economically. These libraries are built around communities and in the order to truly serve the community we must understand the needs of the community. We have found that the parents of these children also show a great deal of interest in the library. For the most part, parents are glad to know that their children spend a large amount of time in these libraries.
In summary, Budimas is working toward the goal of providing good quality education to children in Orang Asli settlements by constructing libraries in rural areas. We hope to be able to empower all these children and in order to leave no one behind.