Saturday, 20 July 2013

Charity Walk for Hearts


Walking for a good cause

Organized by UCSI University

Benefits Sarawak Cheshire Home

Nothing much was supposed to happen during the month of Ramadan.  Yours truly ran at night, mostly doing my gerbil imitation.  The night before the Charity Walk for Hearts I was at LUF24HR till the wee hours.  My marathon training never stops even during the fasting month.  If not I will surely put on weight.  Last year it was like 5kg of goodness around my waist.  The rest of me is fine.  There's this invisible magnet around my waist that just attracts fat cells.  So when I heard about this Charity Walk for Hearts organized by the UCSI University Sarawak Campus I knew I had to join especially since it benefited the Sarawak Cheshire Home.  As a boy I lived nearby and would often go there to help out because I was a member of the Red Crescent.  It was nice to see many people wearing the light green, orange and yellow t-shirts that we were given for signing up.  Just another t-shirt to add to my ever growing collection, but this is just the sort of thing that is not surprisingly very close to my heart.

Associate Professor Dr. Li Jianyao
Associate Professor Dr Li Jianyao, Dean of Faculty of Tourism and Hospitality Management, UCSI University Sarawak Campus, addressed the crowd.  This event was organized by the students of Diploma in Hotel Management.  They spent two months to plan for this event.  They are proud and happy that they have helped successfully raised RM4,000 for the Cheshire Home.  Mr Anthony Jong, Assistant Honourary Treasure, Sarawak Cheshire Home, was on hand to receive the mock cheque.   Also on hand was Mr Harvard Wong, Project Manager of Charity Walk for Hearts. 

L-R: Ashley, Dr. Li, Harvard  and Anthony

 Let the walk begin...


Participants ready to go
The signage made me smile
So we didn't lose our way
Following the crowd
Even the cat waved us on
Not part of the walk but me likes!

To the finish we go...


Me, Anthony Lau and Reuben Su
Nasa Zaidul looking very happy indeed
The only four-legged participant
Berbuka Puasa goodies
Lucky draw hamper time!
UCSI group photo
Reuben with Andrea Ong, the emcee

A jolly good time!

I truly enjoyed myself. From the moment I contacted the tireless Aron to register for the walk I knew this was going to be a wonderful event.  Aron went to the gym to to help me register one evening.  Later he would drop off the t-shirts at another gym in the evening.  Now that is what I call truly hands-on service.  This augurs well for the whole USCI University as well if there are ambassadors such as these.  Then there was Andrea who was so helpful with her notes.  It's the little things that always make me happy.  Like the fact that the kind lady helped me with my berbuka puasa goodies.  I was surprised at the amount of food I had gotten, and that was something to look forward to in the evening.  There was no shortage of refreshments and snacks for those who participated.  Everyone was really friendly.  The Reservoir Park venue was the perfect choice too.  Even though we started walking a bit late, we didn't feel the heat, as we talked up a storm all the way to the finish line.

I was later informed that it wasn't actually a 5km walk. The route had been shortened! Hence the readouts of 3.8km and 4.3km on different GPS tracking devices.  In fact they shortened it because several OKUs were supposed to have joined in the walk to.  Unfortunately they didn't turn up.  That's the sort of thing that makes my heart smile.  Thus the charity walk was aptly named.  Yes this was a charity event, but it was also a walkathon awareness programme.  The fact that so many youngsters participated was a tremendous sign.  This was definitely a job well done and everyone who had a part in organising the Charity Walk for Hearts should give themselves a mighty big pat on the back.  The residents of the Sarawak Cheshire  Home might not know you but I am positive they are ever so grateful for what you have done.  Keep up the good work guys!

The Reservoir Park


In my excitement to write about the Charity Walk for Hearts I forgot to tell people from outside Kuching more about the Sarawak Cheshire Home.  It was officially declared open in November 1969.  However it's formation went back as far as 1966.  A group of people who had heard about the works of the Cheshire Homes, founded by Group Captain Leonard Cheshire began to make plans to establish a home in Kuching  to serve the incurably sick and handicapped for whom there was no special places.  By May 1966, Group Captain Cheshire himself visited Kuching to see into the possibility of establishing a Home here.  The Sarawak Social Welfare Council gave momentum to the fund raising drive with a generous grant.  This grant has been continued annually by the Ministry of Welfare.  The hard work and many contributions of interested individuals from all over the State has since made the construction and running of the Sarawak Cheshire Home possible.

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