Ziarah Prihatin Ramadan: UMP Alumni extends help, brings cheers to Asnaf
By: JUNAIDI ZAKARIA, VICE-PRESIDENT of UMP ALUMNI
FACULTY OF CHEMICAL ENGINEERING & NATURAL RESOURCES
In view of the festive celebration of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, and coupled with concerns about the plight of a number of afflicted families in the vicinity of Kuantan, Pahang, the Graduates Association at Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP), or fondly referred to as UMP Alumni, conducted a “Ziarah Prihatin Ramadan” programme to extend a helping hand and bring cheers and joy to the needy.
Held over the weekend of May 18, 2019, the Ziarah Prihatin Ramadhan was also a coordinated effort with the Department of Student Affairs & Alumni (JHEPA), Yayasan Ikram, I-Bantu Pahang, Ikram Kuantan, Gema Pahang, Hidayah Centre Pahang, Ikram Muda Pahang and the office of Kuantan’s Member of Parliament.
Converging at the UMP Mosque that Saturday, the programme saw 50 volunteers – comprising UMP alumni, staff and undergraduates as well as several representatives from non-governmental organizations (NGO) – gathered at 9am before Programme Director, Mohd Najib Razali kicked it off with a briefing of the day’s agenda.
According to Mohd Najib, who is also Deputy President of UMP Alumni and a lecturer at the university, this year’s programme is a marked improvement from previous years’, and this is reflected in the higher number of Asnaf recipients – or categories of individuals qualified for public welfare and assistance.
About 80 selected Asnaf families around Kuantan benefited from the Ziarah Prihatin Ramadhan programme, where volunteers made their rounds in groups of convoy to visit and distribute packs of food and cash donations.
“Doing our bid for the society, these selected Asnaf families not only get assistance during the fasting month of Ramadhan, but also throughout the year to help them cope with the daily cost of living. And at UMP Alumni, we also continue to draw up more charity programmes,” expressed Mohd Najib.
“In fact, following this Ziarah Prihatin Ramadan, UMP Alumni will continue with the next edition of seasonal charitable activities like Ziarah Prihatin Aidilfitri, Baju Raya Project, Ziarah Prihatin Aidiladha and Back to School uniform distributions,” he emphasized.
Mohd Najib said the Alumni was impressed with and truly appreciated the commitment showed by everyone involved, including the NGOs and individual contributors, in making the annual programme a success.
From the eyes of volunteer Afiqah Yeop – who is an undergraduate studying at the Faculty of Chemical & Natural Resources Engineering (FKKSA) – such programme conducted during the holy month of fasting helps inject a sense of appreciation and gratitude in the hearts of the volunteers, to comprehend what it is like for poverty stricken families have to make do just to get through their daily lives.
“It certainly is heartening that we can help lighten their burden and bring cheers to their lives with our contributions,” Afiqah said, adding that “the programme has given me strength to continue participating in many more community services to help the needy”.
Meanwhile, Asnaf recipient Suhaimi Deraman, who hailed from Kampung Tanjung Api in Kuantan, said he felt blessed having benefited from such programme, and the donations received will certainly ease up his responsibility of preparing the family for the festive celebration.
“It is extremely difficult for me to bear and shoulder the cost of raising eight children, without a full-time permanent employment, and depending only on a meagre pay of RM700 from doing odd jobs,” lamented Suhaimi.
Concurrently, that weekend also saw UMP Alumni holding the “Singgah Sahur” programme when they visited and contributed to the orphans at the Rumah Anak Yatim & Miskin Nur Iman in Kempadang.
Twenty volunteers – comprising UMP alumni and undergraduates as well as representatives from NGO Ikram Muda Pahang – brought cheers and joy to 40 children and staff at the orphanage.
Towards the evening, UMP held a congregation of breaking of fast, dubbed “Majlis Iftar Perdana” and handed out food packs as well as Aidilfitri cash contribution to 20 Asnaf individuals at the Kampung Jaya Gading Mosque.
Present at the event were the Chairman of the Village Community Management, Azmi Muhammad, and the mosque congregation