Helping to make a difference in the life of Malaysian youths

Sonia Ramachandran

PETALING JAYA: They worked together and made a difference abroad. They then thought, “Why don’t we do it at home?”

This was what prompted a group of young Malaysian professionals who had studied abroad to set up a non-governmental organisation called the “Youth Corp Malaysia”.

The purpose: to gather young professionals to work towards improving the youth of the country.

The NGO, which was set up this month, will focus on education, social issues, sports for the young, healthcare and environmental issues.

Youth Corp Malaysia founder and chief executive officer Dr E Venkates Rao said they chose to focus on these areas because they are the most important sectors for the development of the country.

“Education must be the main focus for the future development of the country. If we want to institute change, we need to find solutions for the ongoing social issues plaguing the country.

“Since the obesity rate in the country is reaching alarming rates, shouldn’t sports be a sector for you, me and the young students to be involved in? That is why we chose sports. We chose the healthcare sector because a healthy nation will lead to a developed country and we chose the environment sector because we believe in going green,” said Venkates, who used to be a former Malaysian student leader in India.

For education, this group of young people plans to identify and focus on improving areas where students are found to be lacking.

“For example, we aim to help strengthen students’ command of English and to help them develop their communication skills. We will also expose them to the wide professional education options available in the country and abroad,” said Venkates.

The group also plans to identify social issues on the ground and to draft a memorandum identifying problems with corresponding solutions to address such problems.

This would then be passed on to the relevant government agencies for further action.

“We won’t just stop there. We don’t plan to submit this to the government and just keep quiet about it. We will lobby the government to implement at least some of the solutions we proposed in the memorandum. We want to see some effective progress,” said Venkates.

For the sports sector, they plan to help the government with the “One student, One sport” programme (where each student has to take part in a sport) by bringing national sportsmen and sportswomen to schools.

“We plan to bring in icons in the sporting industry to be role models for the students and to inspire them to want to be great at sports,” said Venkates.

On healthcare, he said the NGO plans to go into rural and Orang Asli areas to create health awareness.

“This will help us become a healthier nation, which is important in light of the fact that 2.6 million Malaysians under the age of 30 are diabetic patients. We also plan to mobilise mobile clinics to these areas,” he said.

On the environment, Venkates said the NGO wants to inculcate the “Go green” concept in students right from the primary school level so they become environmentally conscious at a very young age.

“This passion for us to empower the youth in our country comes from me and my friends having worked together abroad and making a difference there so we thought that instead of making a difference in a foreign country, it’s time to make a difference in ours,” said Venkates.

Comments

This is a lovely feel-good story to start the day with. Kudos to you Dr E Venkates Rao and your team for encouraging activities in education (in particular English), sports and health among our youth. I wish you all the best in getting the Government to collaborate with you on implementing some of your plans. It isn't often that those you have studied abroad, come back home to help make a difference in the lives of young Malaysians.

I salute these young people who instead of sitting, whining and complaining of all the wrongs in the nation (like so many others), are stepping up to take positive action and working with the resources available. Hope they go far and remain inspired!

Beautiful and great effort from Mr.Venkat. Hats off to you and keep on moving. I'll support you as well. Cheers!!

A noble thought and action. With focus and determination anything is possible. I wish you and the team All the Best!

Good to see you people have initiated something for the betterment of the nation&community.it was very good move.my support always there for youngsters who wants to perform something, instead of throwing the blame on others..cheers to all!

Good initiative and definitely something to be applauded. As long as the vision stays true and does not go beyond, then what you want to achieve will definitely hit the mark. My support for your team.

Hats off to Dr Venkates n team. An awesome initial start for the betterment of our youth and country. All the best

You have made us all proud, with your sincere determination and serious efforts. With the same spirit and zeal, you shall always make us proud. Wish you all the best for your future. Well done.

Excellent effort on initiating a programme with a positive impact n achievable goal and directing all the energy of the country's youth for the improvement and betterment for our nation! You have our support & all the best!

Thank you very much for your kind words and encouragement Sasha Pranth. Hopefully we will be able to make a 'little' difference for the needy.

-Venkates Rao-

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