Annual Thanksgiving Night by Malaysian CARE

16 Nov 2013 by Adeline Lum CM-

 

Malaysian CARE had their annual Thanksgiving Night on 9th November at Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya to thank their volunteers for faithfully serving the poor and needy with them.

Dr David Wong, chairman of Malaysian CARE, blessed the attendees with a word of prayer and encouragement. He shared the importance of continuing the good work for the Lord with our God-given talents in joy, patience, and perseverance.

 

Annual Thanksgiving Dinner by Malaysian CARE at Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya
Annual Thanksgiving Dinner by Malaysian CARE at Trinity Methodist Church, Petaling Jaya

Dr David Wong (Nearest person facing the camera with glasses)
Dr David Wong (Nearest person facing the camera with glasses)

 

Lee, a former drug user who was touched by a volunteer in Malaysian CARE sang while strumming his guitar, thanking God for finding and guiding him through the dark times.

Next, Hezekiah Mui shared a brief testimony of how God saved him from a decade-long depression. Hezekiah attempted many ways to cope with depression, such as exercising strenuously, taking anti-depression medications, and even cutting himself to experience physical pain. To make matters worse, Hezekiah later found out that he had cancer. But it was then, he accepted Jesus Christ who healed him from both cancer and depression.

 

Hezekiah Mui sharing about his testimony
Hezekiah Mui sharing about his testimony

 

Having received so much love from God, Hezekiah started volunteering at Malaysian CARE. During his first week of helping young adults with special needs, he went home with many questions: “Why did God create them? To suffer here on earth?” Slowly, his perspective changed. He could see many beautiful things in this group of special people and that they were much happier than him! To Mui, Malaysian Care is like a rainbow where different colors unite and become white, representing our pure and loving Jesus Christ. In other words, only when we unite in love with the weak, sick, and poor, the love of God is shown.

 

Bro Lee who was touched by a volunteer in Malaysian CARE and came to Christ
Bro Lee (far right) who was touched by a volunteer in Malaysian CARE and came to Christ

 

Wong Young Soon, Executive Director of Malaysian CARE, shared how volunteers are one of the most important resources. They form the top tier of the organization all-the-way to the grassroots level.

“Without volunteers, people cannot experience the love of Christ. This night is to say thank you to all of you,” said Young Soon.

 

Volunteers who served with Malaysian CARE over the years
Volunteers who served with Malaysian CARE over the years

 

He shared how year 2013 had been an intense year for Malaysian CARE, whereby they expanded their base to Sabah to serve the poor who made up almost one-fourth of the population, and also to serve the people with special needs there due to the lack of services. This expansion has been timely, especially when their three-year commitment to train their Cambodian counterparts in drug rehab will be ending this year, hence allowing them to focus more on Sabah and Sarawak.

Besides, Ladang MCare will also be embarking on its expansion as well, whereby Young Soon hopes to serve more rural poor. They also started a mobile resource center for the urban poor called ‘Bumblebee’ which brings books, games, toys, and development programs into low-cost flats. A Refugee Youth Centre has also been set up to teach music and computer literacy.

 

The Bumblebee which brings books, games, toys, and development programs into low-cost flats
The Bumblebee which brings books, games, toys, and development programs into low-cost flats

 

Lastly, Malaysian CARE is also actively promoting the Exposed Campaign, a global call to action against corruption that affects the poor the most. This campaign aims to collect one million digital signatures to petition to world leaders in the next G20 meeting to make changes for the poor in this world. To sign petition online: www.exposed2013.com

Despite the many new initiatives, Malaysian CARE is still running their existing projects while expanding, causing a deficit of RM700,000 in operational cost. Yet, instead of a problem of over-expansion, Young Soon believed that this is a call for all churches in Malaysia to step up and meet God’s work in our country to fight inequality, poverty, corruption, and marginalization, which mostly affects Sabah and Sarawak.

 

Wong Young Soon
Wong Young Soon

 

Although Malaysian CARE has a heart for the poor and needy, their efforts will always be limited by a lack of resources. Hence, they are also calling for volunteers to join them in their vision to bring more of Christ’s love into this land.

“I lived in the slums in Bangkok for six weeks. It was during that experience that I saw God’s heart for the poor,” said Karen Ngooi in her early twenties who joined Malaysian CARE as a volunteer after returning from her studies abroad.

 

Karen Ngoi (right-most) talking to other young volunteers
Karen Ngoi (right-most) talking to other young volunteers

 

When asked if she was attracted to working in the corporate world that seems to offer wealth and glamour, she answered that Christians should not be too eager in getting rich because Jesus’ heart is for the poor and needy. “It is my privilege to serve the poor,” she quipped.

Rachel Shanti, a staff in her twenties in Malaysian CARE also shared similar sentiments, “My parents run an orphanage, so it’s already ingrained in my blood to serve. I take this as a training to equip myself further. Malaysian CARE is very holistic, so that eventually, I can take over from my parents (for the orphanage).”

 

Rachel Shanti (second from right) with the children of her sports program
Rachel Shanti (second from right in blue shirt) with the children of her sports program in a poor urban area

 

Having started a sports program in Malaysian CARE for the last eight months in an urban poor area, Shanti is now leading 15 children into a brighter future through sports and education.

The night ended with a scrumptious dinner after Pr Pax Tan was invited to bless the meal. Everyone from different ministries busily connected, recounting the days they made a difference in someone’s life.  

 

Pr Pax Tan praying over the meals
Pr Pax Tan praying over the meals

Everyone having a meal together
Everyone having a meal together

 

Truly, we need more young people who have the vigor, creativity, and passion for the poor and needy! Would you like to volunteer for Malaysian CARE? Please visit http://www.malaysiancare.org for more information.

 

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Reference for pictures:

All pictures were credited to Malaysian CARE except for the 'Bumblebee' picture (http://www.thestar.com.my/~/media/Images/TSOL/Photos-Gallery/central/2013/09/12/metd_kk_1209_12f.ashx)

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