Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dialogue with OKU

Very recently my office organised a dialogue with the OKU (disabled) in my constituency. The event was reported in The Star and Malay Mail. The idea came about one day when I was imagining a session where I could gather all OKUs in Subang Jaya and listen to their struggles (most OKUs do not come out to participate in our monthly town hall meetings). The imagination became a reality on 22nd Nov. My office gathered a group of young volunteers to begin the task of identifying the OKUs. We obtained the list of registered OKUs from Jabatan Kebajikan and began calling each OKU and sent a personal invitation to each one of them. This group of young volunteers also assisted in giving free transportation to the OKUs, by sending them to MPSJ for the dialogue and then sending them home. This is the direction I wish to see - young people, instead of wasting time with non-productive and unhealthy activities, lead the way by offering their services and time in changing the community.

MPSJ councillors were invited to listen to the woes faced by the disabled in matters concerning the local council ie. planning requirements, work opportunities for the OKUs at MPSJ and public facilities. Jabatan Kebajikan was also present to listen to suggestions on improving their services. A sign language interpreter was also engaged so that the deaf and mute residents could participate in the dialogue. Counters were also set up for OKU car stickers applications and services by Jabatan Kebajikan.

During my speech, I was overwhelmed with emotions as I addressed the OKUs present. I remembered the days when my late grandfather was bedridden and how my heart broke each time we went out and he had to stay home. I told my OKU constituents that they too are taxpayers and they deserve every right to be heard. Subang Jaya has the resources to be a disabled-friendly neighbourhood.

Addressing the OKU and their caretakers

The OKUs and their caretakers

With mothers of children with cerebral palsy

While the adults attended the dialogue, volunteers assisted in taking care of the children

Networking time for the OKUs during lunch

With the selfless young volunteers - young people taking the lead in serving the community

With Cheryl Mohan, who despite her limitations offered her assistance as a volunteer for the dialogue

With Allan Kok and his wife - Allan was an engineer before he became wheelchair-bound


Anonymous said...

Cheryl Mohan is doing good in DiGi, proud of her :)

Darick said...

m'sia will b better with more people like u & PR gomen.
m'sia will b fr bad to worse if m'sia gonna continue to hv corrupted regime racist Umno robbing, raping & sodomising m'sia wealth 'legally' & protected by their lap-dogs polis, AG, ACA & judiciary !

Phil said...

Hannah, a job well done indeed. I can see the passion you have for your constituents.

As you had saluted the caregivers, I hereby salute you for all you have done in your constituency. All Subang Jaya residents should be proud to have a assemblymen like you. I envy them for sure.

I wish you all the best in all your future undertakings. Although not in your constituency I hope one day I will be able to volunteer in your activities as well.

Steven Wong said...

Hi Hannah,

I missed out this event. However, I would like to highlight this so that you might want to talk to all shopping malls' management / car park operators' in sunway / subang jaya.

The enforcement is not strong enough from those parties where they simply allow the "normal people" park on the OKU designated parking. A lot of time I have to go around to look for car park as those parking lot always occupied by the "normal people".

The awareness level is not high enough and those people don't see the painful experience for OKU to to go the public area.

Just check on the OKU parking lot when you visit carrefour or sunway pyramid next time, you will surprise it is not use by OKU group of people and the management didn't bother to enforce the rules. Then, what's the point to allocate the parking lot? Might well just replace it as normal car park then.

Fhez said...

I am not from your constituency but i admire all your efforts which are lacking elsewhere today.
Keep up your good works.

Anonymous said...

dear YB,

thanks for this wonderful event.

hope the OKU can get tangible benefits out of this

and the young volunteers deserve a pat on their back

our welfare ministry should get their staff to do leg work, scouting, engaging and locating people who need help. at the moment, I don't know where is the ministry is located, what assistance they provide and how to apply for assistance. the minsitry should be more accessible to the public.

Hannah Yeoh for prime minister.

Lee Wee Tak