19 July 2018, KUALA LUMPUR – Tuanku Syed Putra Foundation, also known as Yayasan Tuanku Syed Putra (YTSP) aims to raise another RM5.5 million to build an autism centre for the community in Perlis, which would be the first in the state. The centre will also benefit people from the northern region to build a brighter future for people with autism.
Through a collaborative effort with Universiti Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP) two years ago, the Autism Hub for Educational Resources and Training (A-HEART) initiative was formed and raised RM500,000 to build an autism centre for children at UniMAP’s campus. Moving forward, A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre is looking to expand to a full-fledged centre to reach out to more people in need. YTSP is now aiming to raise RM6 million over 3 years to realise this expansion.
YTSP is chaired by His Highness Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Ibni Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Jamalullail, The Crown Prince Of Perlis, who is also UniMAP Chancellor while A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre is under the Royal Patronage of Her Highness Tuanku Hajah Lailatul Shahreen Akashah Khalil, The Consort Of The Crown Prince Of Perlis. She is also UniMAP Pro-Chancellor.
Prof Emeritus Datuk Dr Kamarudin Hussin who is a Board Member of Yayasan Tuanku Syed Putra (YTSP) and the Chairman of the Board of Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) said: “YTSP aims to develop an autism centre to provide the community with access opportunities for quality education, life skills training and support for the community, parents of autistic children, carers and professionals. The foundation has been receiving encouraging support from corporate bodies that have contributed half a million to the foundation to date. Today, we are honoured to have Acts One Group Inc. to support us to help establish a full-fledged autism centre a reality very soon.”
Founder and Chairman of Acts One Group Inc., Serena Chiam said: “I believe in contributing to the betterment of society. It is the same culture that is embraced in my company - to lend a helping hand to those who are in need.”
“We play our part in shaping a better future for all and hope that more corporations and individuals will be encouraged to donate to YTSP with the goal to fund the expansion of the A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre.”
Also present was UniMAP Vice-Chancellor Prof. Dato’ Dr. Zul Azhar Zahid Jamal, who expressed his gratitude towards corporate bodies that have lent their support not only through monetary value but also organising community events. “Just recently, Bank Rakyat organised the ‘Bank Rakyat-A-Heart Autismlympic Carnival’, a unique sporting event to encourage sports in autism students. Then in February this year, YTL donated RM100,000 to YTSP. Last year, we had Bank Rakyat again to organise the ‘Bank Rakyat A-HEART Rainbow Walk’ that saw 1,398 participants made up of children from orphanages and university students to celebrate National Autism Awareness Month.”
“Having said, I believe that by creating awareness at different layers and levels of the public will contribute positively to the provision of a dynamic eco-system to the autism group. We hope more corporate bodies, individuals and parties will come forward to support this long-term Corporate Social Responsibility of UniMAP. Not to miss out, I am very proud of the dedication shown by the UniMAP’s educators and students who have been managing the current centre. Through this initiative, I hope it will continue to boost their enthusiasm to doing good for the community.”
Meanwhile, Autism Buddies who is supporting the cause plays an instrumental role in the A-HEART initiative was represented by Puan Sri Dato’ Akmal Abdul Salam, who is also the patron of Breast Cancer Welfare Association Malaysia (BCWA).
She said: “Although public awareness of autism is high, understanding is still low. In a few years, there will be a challenge for education services authorities to meet the needs of the growing group of Malaysians with autism. So, we need to increase our resources in the country to develop facilities and programmes to cater to this community that demands for such services.”
Currently, the A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre is fully operated by the university. The centre is equipped with various facilities and interactive teaching aids. Beyond these facilities, the expansion of A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre is committed to offering services such as early detection and intervention through treatment, therapy and the best educational approach to children with autism as well as support to the parents, carers and professionals.
Additionally, the center will provide education and skills training for young people with autism based on their different abilities and interests. This means that the approach adopted by A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre will help those with autism build their own lives in the future. Ultimately, it hopes to be a referral point to other parties that are keen to serve the autism community in Perlis.
Acts One Group Inc. is also the corporate sponsor for YTSP to raise funds for A-HEART UniMAP Autism Centre through the GOLD A-HEART Fundraising appreciation dinner that will be held on 19 October 2018 at Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur. Acts One Group Inc. is a leading multi-disciplinary holding company and its subsidiary, Aureo Gallery Ltd is the Sole Distributor of Creative Art in South East Asia specifically for Kim Il Tae’s Gold Art. Acts One Group Inc. and Aureo Gallery will be contributing two special pieces of Gold Art which are the only two pieces in the world for auction at the appreciation dinner. In addition to the two Gold Art pieces for auction, there will be other collectors’ items for auction as well.
For more information about GOLD A-HEART Fundraising appreciation dinner, please contact Edna Lee at 016-246 3186.