I'd link this, but news pages expire after a while.
Courtesy The Star, Malaysia
Wednesday February 10, 2010
PECH requires RM16,000 a month to maintain its three homes
By ANN MARIE CHANDY
THERE are 24 children living in the Praise Emmanuel Children’s Home (PECH) in Petaling Jaya. and every one of them has a sad story — some were abandoned and some are from violent and abusive families, while others were neglected by their drug addict parents.
Yet, when you first meet these little ones, you would never think they come with such shocking emotional baggage. They appear happy. They are friendly, almost confident by nature, and very appreciative of the blessings that come their way.
There 15 boys and nine girls at the home.
The home was set up in 2004, and has been continuously lending support to underprivileged children (and sometimes their families), thanks to the donors.
Pursuing their education: The girls at the home studying and doing their homework.
PECH’s commitment to the children includes providing a shelter and homely environment for abused, abandoned, neglected and orphaned children; creating a foundation for a good education; providing counselling and encouragement to the emotionally hurt children; reconciling children with parents wherever possible, and cultivating strong moral values in these children..
While being grateful for all the support received thus far, PECH manager of children’s affairs and public relations Christopher Michael, is still wary of the year ahead and how the home will find enough resources to uphold the home’s commitment to these children.
Aged between five and 17 years, all the children go to school. Getting books, uniforms and school shoes alone is a logistical nightmare — anyone with children of their own will easily relate to this dilemma.
It does not help that PECH has a staff of only six, which includes Michael and a driver who has to ferry the children to and from nearby schools, including SMK Assunta, SRJKT Vivekananda, SK Seri Bintang, SJKC Chen Moh and Madeleine Kindergarten.
An immediate need of the home is a new van. The existing one is 18 years old and breaks down almost every week.
“It is so distressing each time I receive a call from the driver because I am sure that the van has broken down again,” Michael said, adding that he has already received enough money to place a deposit on a new van, but has to be able to cover loan payments before PECH can commit to the purchase.
The home also needs to maintain a budget of RM16,000 a month to maintain its three homes — two in Petaling Jaya (one for girls, and the other for boys) as well as one in Ipoh. The budget includes provisions and medication for the children, basic household items, petrol, electricity and water as well as rent and salaries for the staff.
Michael hopes to be able to set up an office in one of the existing homes to ease administrative work.
He is hoping to get some office equipment for this purpose, such as a computer, fax machine, steel cabinets and racks.
The children all need tutoring as well, but Michael says there have been numerous volunteers who have helped in the past and continue to do so.
He laments the fact it is difficult to get donations from corporations that prefer to help only if they obtain tax relief.
Michael also has to deal with a lot of red tape when it comes to education aid and the problems the children have at school because their parental details are so sketchy.
“It is difficult for our children to get aid in school because we are not able to provide details like their father’s monthly income — many of these children have been abandoned or their parents hardly come to visit them, so there is little we can do to provide these details.”
Well-wishers who would like to contribute in cash or kind, can call Michael at 012-630 3672. PECH is located at No. 7, Jalan 6/6, 46000 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.