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Jun 27, 2013

Reaching Out to Pulau Ketam with TFM

Jun 27, 2013 6:23 PM Posted by XiMnet Malaysia , , , ,
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”
~ Nelson Mandela

Do you remember your first day at school?

Do you remember waking up that fateful morning wearing your slightly stiff white and blue school uniform after a cold shower? Do you remember that sense of anticipation tempered with anxiety?

Do you remember the noise and the chatters greeting you as you arrive at school; the smell of the new place, the faces of all those little kids. Do you still recall the look of that one adult who was surrounded by all your little classmates, sitting in front of the class?

I’ll always remember my first trip to the school on my father’s bicycle, the same he uses to get to work every day as a rubber tapper. It was in the month of January 1971, and I remember holding on to his hand as he lead me into the school. I remember thinking to myself, how big the school compound was.

I remember a tree shedding red blossoms in the breeze as they swirled downwards and scattered across the pavement outside the building where people wearing a serious look walk in and out of. And oh, I’ve never seen so many little kids like me all in lines, in white and blue, watched over by bigger ones in ties.

 Primary School Class Photo (1971)

Looking back, I now know how my life would be forever changed for the better from that day onwards. And I am thankful for the education I was given. I am grateful to my father who truly believed in educating his children.

I am still inspired by all my teachers who lit my curiosity and gave me fuel to continue my quest for knowledge through the years. I am what I am today because their love for teaching still burn within me.

Education is a great liberator. A good education can open up a child’s mind and lift her out of the limitations of her surroundings. A good education sets a child on the path of life with affirming choices and opportunities. A well-educated child changes not only her life but the lives of her family ultimately.

For that very reason, I’ve been a fervent supporter of TEACH FOR MALAYSIA (TFM). There’s nothing more inspiring for me than watching bright young graduates side-stepping their career goals for 2 years to dedicate their lives to make a difference to school children in far-flung places.

Left: Ken Ming & Priscilla (TFM Fellows) and Wiley. Right: XiMnet Representatives for Career Week.

It has been 2 years now for me as a fellow for TFM. Together with my team members at XIMNET, we are humbled and we feel privileged to have the opportunity to share our life stories and contribute in our little ways to inspire young schoolchildren at the Pulau Ketam Secondary School to reach out further than their little fishing village for the lives they hope to live.

If I can only alter the trajectory of ONE CHILD’s life from suffocating mediocrity to a life of self-actualization and fulfillment, all our time and effort that my team and I have put into this will be deemed well-spent.

So go ahead, feed a child’s curiosity today with love and watch her blossom.

 Pulau Ketam Secondary School Career Week.

Support Teach For Malaysia ( in whatever ways you can, so we can all reach out to all those beautiful children of Malaysia and make a difference to their lives. And ours too.

“He who opens a school door, closes a prison.”
~ Victor Hugo

 Trip to XiMnet Office organized by Teach For Malaysia.