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Realising Dreams to Mount Kinabalu 2019

Ministry of Human Resources Malaysia together with Global Expedition Club(GEC) gave an exclusive opportunity to 10 students from Myskills Foundation to hike Mount Kinabalu. The expedition started from 12th to 15th September 2019 with the group of GEC members together with 10 of our students.

Timpohon Gate (altitude of 1,866m) where all of us began the journey up the tallest point in Malaysia. The hike was truly a challenging one for our students, but with adrenaline rush and motivation from the GEC members it was a great push for them. Adding the challenge towards half way of the journey, bad weather with strong wind kicked in. We had to make tough call to patiently wait and later received news that it was not safe as the weather was getting really bad. Despite of the frustration of not completing the journey, we made a gratitude note for having a chance to
‘Feel’ the tallest mountain of our nation.

Azrul, one of our students who took part in the expedition shared he was very grateful that his dream of flying to Sabah and hiking Mount Kinabalu came like a wild dream. It was a lifetime experience for him. Getting on an aeroplane itself was first time for him too. Azrul also said that he will pray to come back to Mount Kinabalu someday and climb to the summit to complete this somehow.

Our Myskills students were very appreciative for the amazing opportunity given by Global Expedition Club together especially by YB Kulasegaran, Minister of Human Resources for the project “ Realising Dreams to Mount Kinabalu “

What gratified us is the impact that all the 10 boys gained from the last 2 months of intensive training and the maturity of handling contingencies. The universe had a great reason not to end the journey by reaching the summit once but driving us to come again with greater strength.

Selamat Hari Malaysia to All !

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MySkills OPEN DAY 2019

In conjunction with Merdeka Day celebration, MySkills had the privilege hosting Open Day event with Thendral Magazine Readers Club at campus in Kalumpang with students, parents, volunteers, donors, supporters, and together with local community.

Visitors and students enjoyed wide line up of activities on carnival mode with booths selling food with beverages, snacks, pastries, fun games with 9 A-Side football tournament too. Started from 9am until 6pm , there were constant crowd and energetic atmosphere where everyone having good time with each other. The students had prepared themselves for merdeka parade for opening ceremony and honored the day with respectful tribute for national belonging. Another initiative to relive nostalgic moments of watching movie on open field in the night, made the day a memorable one.

The core idea of OPEN DAY is to spend quality time with students and parents (our beneficiaries) in which the presence of volunteers and donors (stakeholders) add great value to us in MySkills.

MySkills Board of Directors took the privilege touring the campus new face-lift to the donors, supporters and volunteers and shared the development plans with great sense of gratification. We could sense many who supported the cause and joined the OPEN DAY admired the campus evolution taking place and pledged more support for greater commitment.

We take this opportunity to thank all those souls whom were there in campus despite of long weekend traffic but made their time available for community uplifting.

BE a Volunteer/Donor . Be the CHANGE !

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SUSTAINABLE TRANSFORMATION WITH HSBC

HSBC Bank Malaysia Berhad and MySkills Foundation (MSF) today announced their collaboration in a joint venture initiative to empower at-risk youth in Malaysia with the skill sets required for gainful employment. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between HSBC Bank Malaysia Berhad and MySkills Foundation today, at the MySkills Transformation Campus in Kalumpang witnessed by YB Tuan Kulasegaran Murugeson, Minister of Human Resources, Malaysia.

The 12-month training programme commenced from April 2019, targets 100 youths to equip them with vocational training, life management and soft skills in order to transition them to higher paying jobs upon graduation from the programme.

The initiative not only supports youth who are in need of sustainable livelihoods but also addresses the country’s challenge in hiring talent with technical and vocational education and training (TVET) related skills. According to the government’s 11th Malaysia Plan, about 60 percent of the 1.5 million new jobs expected to be created in Malaysia between 2016 and 2020 will require TVET skills and there are concerns of a lack of Malaysians trained with the right skill sets to meet the demand.

Funded by HSBC, the training programme which includes vocational training is to enable the 100 students for careers in electrical, plumbing, air-conditioning, corporate secretarial and bakery production. Graduating students will be placed with industry partners – which include small-and-medium enterprises and contractors. Concurrently, MySkills will also train the students in basic employability skills, knowledge and work ethics needed to successfully transition into the workforce.

Stuart Milne, Chief Executive Officer, HSBC Malaysia said at the ceremony, “Since our foundation in 1865, HSBC has helped communities to thrive in the modern world. One of our main Corporate Sustainability pillars is to support the financial capability and employability opportunities of the people in the communities we serve, especially for young people.”

“Through our partnership with MySkills Foundation on this project, we hope to give the youth exposure to a wide range of skills that will bolster their chances of having a bright and successful future. I would like to commend MySkills Foundation for their extraordinary contribution to enabling the next generation of Malaysia to become economically independent. We are pleased to have the opportunity to work with such a reputable community organisation that shares our vision of supporting and enabling the employability of young people and look forward to working with them to execute this project over the coming year”, he added.

“MySkills Foundation aims to increase the exposure on work experience (On-Job-Training) to lower the dropout rate that exists, one of the challenges faced. The exposure we hope, would best build occupational character building that will result in stronger retention. Our partnership with HSBC adds greater value for sustainable transformation in terms of human capital, skills competency and enterprising value-based education” , said Mr S Pasupathi , Director of MySkills Foundation.

“Recent study showed a disconnect between the skills that educational and training institutions are imparting and what the industry is seeking. Malaysia has a well-educated workforce, fairly low unemployment and a government proactive in expanding its pool of skilled workers. We remain fully committed to supporting economic growth, inclusion and skills training in this country.”

Join us to add great value for future generation by volunteering or assisting our self-sustenance via social enterprising

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Commemoration of Gandhi Memorial Park and 150 Trees Planting in Conjunction of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th Birthday Celebration

Category : Blogs , events , home news2 , home news3

The spirit of Mahatma Gandhi for non-violence, social justice and national freedom to mankind is still being lived and remembered globally. Declaration of two years Global celebration from October 2nd, 2018 until October 2nd, 2020 for His 150th year celebration gave us a golden opportunity to host this prestigious event by creating Gandhi Memorial Park at MySkills Campus together with High Commission of India to Malaysia. Hon. Minister YB Tuan M Kulasegaran officiated the commemoration event as the Guest of Honour.

Myskills Foundation is a sanctuary for at risk students whom require Holistic Transformation approach to be shaped becoming responsible individuals to family, society and nation. It was a great experience shared with all on the context of non-violence, social justice and peace but it also built our nationalism in our very own country.

MySkills Director, Mr S Pasupathi recalled 8 year journey of MySkills with our donors contribution to help us reach the position we are today after challenging times. He also thanked the new partners and government agencies whom are currently supporting MySkills on training grants. Gratitude and giving are two core elements that we preach throughout the years.

Our Guest of Honor, Hon. Minister YB Tuan M Kulasegaran during his third visit to MySkills expressed his fascination over the tremendous growth in the short span of time. NGO Institutions like MySkills should receive more support from the community and Minister pledged his commitment to assist in whichever way to reach the common vision inspired.

Mr Nishit Kumar Ujjwal the Counsellor of Community Affairs & Labor, High Commission of India to Malaysia shared his experience beyond the expectations he had before coming to the campus. He was very touched with the students confidence level after seeing them performing for all who were present. It was indeed a great honor for High Commission of India to Malaysia partnering with MySkills Foundation, he said.

The event went smooth for the both commemoration and tree planting with all the distinguished guests and students of MySkills.

With more blessings, we now have Mahatma Gandhi’s presence to spread humanity to our young generation and we thank each and every one who made the event meaningful and successful.

MySkills Foundation is one step closer to holistically equip the campus with values of humanity and social enterprising.

Help us to create values to the transformation role in campus by pledging for volunteering or donating. Log on to www.myskills.org.myfor more details.

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Good deeds are always remembered. The older it gets, more valuable it will be.

Category : Blogs , events , home news1 , home news3

 

https://news.3m.com/stories/sending-employees-around-the-world-to-change-the-world

The large glass case was full of knives, machetes, brass knuckles, homemade tattoo equipment, gang paraphernalia and cigarettes, all confiscated from the young students at MySkills Foundation. The sign, “Strictly Prohibited Items,” made the expectations clear.

MySkills Foundation, located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing second-chance opportunities for at-risk youth in the ethnic Indian community of Malaysia. The Indian community makes up 10 percent of the total Malaysian population yet is responsible for 70 percent of the country’s gang-related crime.

The students range in age from 13 to 20. Many are former gang members who dropped out of school and were living in a dysfunctional environment before coming to MySkills. The mission is to equip these boys and girls with fundamental social, life and workplace skills so they can find jobs and integrate into mainstream society.

In November 2017, 3M sent 14 employees to Malaysia for two immersive weeks as part of the 3M Impact program, a skills-based, pro-bono service program in which teams of 3Mers volunteer their time and talents to benefit nonprofit organizations around the world. Three of these employees were assigned to MySkills and over the course of two weeks helped the organization revamp its stakeholder engagement strategy and communications plan.

According to MySkills CEO Devasharma Gangadaran, two major areas the team looked into were volunteers and corporate partnerships. “They helped us match our volunteer force to relevant areas, to reduce operating expenses,” he said. “They suggested ways to engage more shared community ownership of the MySkills cause. And they created detailed, step-by-step initiatives, including a volunteer manual and analytical tools, which helped us plan effectively for the new year.”

About the results achieved by the 3M Impact team, Gangadaran said, “MySkills Foundation was deeply impacted by the relentless effort of 3M to transform lives of youth at risk in Malaysia. We had a vision for a self-sustaining campus with numerous enterprising ventures in the future, and they helped us make it real in a short amount of time.”

More than a year after the 3M Impact project, 3M is still involved with MySkills. The 3M Impact team is still in contact with Gangadaran and other staff members, and 3M recently provided a grant for $10,000 to MySkills to help them continue their inspirational programs and to help them implement the 3M Impact team recommendations, “allowing them to be more sustainable to continue to develop more programs for the underprivileged communities in Malaysia,” said Parameswaran Nair, managing director of 3M Malaysia.

How the 3M Impact program works

3M Impact projects are designed to make a positive economic or social impact on the local organization and community while providing an opportunity for participants to strengthen leadership skills, develop market insights and spur innovative thinking. 3Mers globally are encouraged to apply each fall and are selected based on the skill sets needed to support community partners in accomplishing their project goals.

Before and after their time on location, the 3M Impact teams work to create action plans that enable their partner organizations to achieve long-lasting change.

While the 3M Impact program benefits the nonprofit partners, it also benefits the 3M employees chosen to take part in the program, providing a challenging and rewarding development opportunity that enables them to grow as leaders, build relationships with colleagues from around the globe and share their skills to make a positive difference in the world. In fact, many past participants say the experience has been life-changing.

3M Impact evolves for 2019

The 3M Impact program continues to grow and evolve. In 2017, 50 3Mers went to three countries. This year, 125 3Mers will travel to nine countries. The first trips of 2019, to India and the Philippines, have concluded. Next up: Morocco and Turkey in April. And new for 2019, all projects will ladder up to 3M’s new sustainability framework – fitting into either Science for Climate, Science for Community or Science for Circular.

https://news.3m.com/stories/sending-employees-around-the-world-to-change-the-world

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Public Awareness Medical Camp by Sai Ananda Nilayam in collaboration with MySkills Foundation

Many of us are heading towards end of holiday mode but for the team in MySkills and Sai Ananda Nilayam, it was a busy Sunday morning. For the very first time in Kalumpang Campus, we had co-organized Free Medical Camp in partnership with Sai Ananda Nilayam.

Sai Ananda Nilayam is a noble spiritual movement envisioned to provide this voluntary medical assistance for almost 15 years. From bi-annual camps, they have grown to organize monthly once in various hot spot area where medical assistance outreach are essential.

MySkills is humbled with their presence to make desirable impact where we also require personal medical attention and exposure on good hygiene practices. Many of our children whom enrol in MySkills are those from dysfunctional environment that lacks basic human values. We face tremendous challenges to re-engineer their character which require us to touch heavily on the basic living skills.

30 of the dedicated volunteers comprising of doctors, dentists, pharmacists, dermatologist , medical assistants and optometrist were early birds at 8am to kickstart the event. More than 150 students and local residents of Kalumpang town received the free medical screening and relevant medication from the medical officers. All of them were dressed up white to best reflect their genuine service for every community.

“Life is a song – sing it.
Life is a game – play it.
Life is a challenge – meet it.
Life is a dream – realize it.
Life is a sacrifice – offer it.
Life is love – enjoy it. “

Do contact us if you want to be a part of MySkills volunteer team to provide your passion and expertise for community uplifting.

Visit our Facebook page or website (www.myskills.org.my) to register as a volunteer. Together let’s make greater Impact !

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1.1.2019 , Welcoming 2019 with a GOAL !

Category : Blogs , events , home news2 , news , Recent Posts

Myskills notched the New year with the most memorable event in the beginning of the year. Our Youth began 2019 with their very own Football Tournament which held on our football field. These young youth were pumped with energy and excitement for this tournament. A week before the tournament. A week before the tournament was held, our young and exited youth have started their training. They were prepared before entering the field on the day of the tournament.

The reason for this tournament organised was to compensate new year celebration with family for all the student in hostel. By organising such activities, we have observed stronger bonding with the students in which they are engaged productively for the public holiday. It was even merrier , when myskills staff together with the volunteers play together as a team.

Students were divided into 9 groups for 9-a-side tournament. Each game lasted for 14 minutes and all the teams concluded the one day league with memorable prizes and gratified experience. Gratitude to Mr.Ragavan ( Director of Myskills) and Myskills Volunteers ( Mr Ravi & Mr Mahen) who organised the tournament with fun-filled experience and welcome 2019 with A GOAL.

 

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Educating on Drugs Abuse to Myskills Youths ( A session with Mr Yogeswaran )

Category : Blogs , home news3 , news , Recent Posts

“When a student, in school, or anyone, offers a tablet for remembering for school lessons well, you must think”.  This is what Jananey, 16, says she has learned, apart from other useful information from a Drug Awareness session conducted by Mr. Yogeswaran from Kementerian Dalam Negeriat MySkills on December 20th.These tablets which come in four colours, i.e. red, apple green, yellow and blue are drugs. These are harmful to health and are addictive. And so one must not take them, she said. She further explained that these impact the heart, have poison and lead to mental disturbance.  While she did hear about such an impact when she was in school, she did not take this knowledge seriously.

Tharshini Sunder 17added that taking drugs meant a “slow death” because if someone stars taking drugs, it becomes addictive. The mind she said will keep saying “drugs”. These are among the facts she learnt through the talk. She wants to play a role in society to try and stop young people from joining bad company and become drug addicts.

Ms. Anne Samuel, a lecturer from MySkills, appreciates this programme, reflecting on it as a “perfect programme for students in the age range of 14 to 17 as it has provided them with knowledge about the type of drugs and how one gets addicted.  The speaker’s strong stand against drug addiction, its impact on the lives of the addicts which was very sad, opened the eyes of the students, added Ms. Anne. The value of the talk provided students an insight into how to choose friends and life partners. This itself is a big bonus from the talk, said Ms. Anne.

MySkills with its commitment to transforming the attitudes   of youth from very tough backgrounds, continues to make available programmes which empower our youth. Tharshini, in making a statement about her own contribution, certainly is in the right direction.   So too Jananey who has “sat up” and taken seriously the path she must stay away from, for life. And chose that which MySkills has lit up for her and all who come via the MySkills door.

Veronica Anne Retnam

31.12.2018

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Ending with Good Qualities

Yesterday marked the last Bhagavad Gita class conducted by our most dedicated Volunteer Ms Ranjini for year 2018 at Myskills Foundation. They had a small gathering to celebrate a good full year of joy, fun and knowledge that we have obtained in this 2018.

Dr. Prajindra honoured the gathering with his presence and as our Guest of Honour, he delivered a talk on *“Conquering the Enemies- Anger and Envy”.*

They also talked about success. A true success is to be peaceful. With peace comes happiness. But how to attain this? First, one has to attain a successful mind. Texts 13 and 14 of Chapter 12 of the Bhagavad Gita describes how one can attain a successful mind.

Bg. 12.13-14
adveṣṭā sarva-bhūtānāṁ
maitraḥ karuṇa eva ca
nirmamo nirahaṅkāraḥ
sama-duḥkha-sukhaḥ kṣamī

santuṣṭaḥ satataṁ yogī
yatātmā dṛḍha-niścayaḥ
mayy arpita-mano-buddhir
yo mad-bhaktaḥ sa me priyaḥ

Translation
One who is not envious but is a *kind friend to all living entities*, who *does not think himself a proprietor* and is *free from false ego*, who is *equal in both happiness and distress*, who is *tolerant*, *always satisfied*, *self-controlled*, and *engaged in devotional service with determination*, his *mind and intelligence fixed on Me* – such a devotee of Mine is very dear to Me.

Looking forward to a good 2019 and may our learning and the wisdom of the Bhagavad Gita bring about the transformation we all very much hanker for. Happy New Year!

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A journey began, a journey completed; a new journey begins…..

8th December 2018 marked an exciting day in the life of 103 young people gathered at MySkills Youth Transformation Campus, Kalumpang. They were part of a bigger group, from 2010, who had dared to take the first step in a different direction. It was MySkills 6th graduation session. Together with them were their parents/mothers/ care-givers; for most of them at least. The emotion was surely mixed for the handful of students who were there without family being present.
The dignity that MySkills graduates gained as they received their Malaysian Vocational certificates from the Guest of Honour Datuk B. Sahadevan is something that has come from the efforts of many, including the youth themselves. Datuk Sahadevan in his opening address quoted from what Mr Pasupathi had recalled, that of the quote of the Late Tun Sambanthan- “being poor but not timid”. And he likened MySkills’ growth from a “small seed to such a big endevour”.
Datuk Sahadevan reminded the youth to be responsible to take care of their lives as the future of the community he shared, relied heavily on them. Mr. Pasupathi had earlier brought the audience back to a historical point, that of the contribution made by Indians in the days of early Malaya, of the arduous task of cutting the jungle, of planting rubber. “This is your place” reminded the founding Director of MySkills. “MySkills is restoring the dignity the Indians once had” he added. For Dr. Sanmugasiva “ teaching a poor child will lead to God looking for you”. He assured the youth that MySkills will follow up with them in the journey of their life.

What is this transformation, one may wonder. For Peter Rajoo, from Rembau who stepped foot into MySkills in 2016 at Port Klang, it was a change in attitude to so many aspects of life, including food. He learned to eat vegetables only at MySkills; he never communicated respectfully with anyone but through his time in MySkills, he learned that there were some words you never used on anyone. This reminder came everyday at assembly- the MySkills pledge, in Tamil and English.
He learned that there was a certain way of speaking. He learned it by witnessing how his ‘teachers” spoke. He is grateful to all staff and volunteers for showing him the path, even that of bringing his interest in sports to a higher level. Kegundren, 17 shared that he used to speak without thinking but now he knows what respect is. He has also learned about reality, the “outside world”, the good and bad. He now is proud to have secured a job as a wireman in Karak Pahang. Like Peter Rajoo, he is now set to make his contribution to his family.

Mr. Deva was all smiles as he announced the MySkills Foundation Awards beginning with the highest, i.e. Raja Dato’ Rashid Badiozaman Transformation Award. This went to Ganesan Thewasikamany for his exemplary leadership traits besides his multi-technical skills. MySkills being an inclusive training instution, gave recognition to a youth with Special needs, i.e. Logeswary Ganesan. Her partial hearing ability was not used as an excuse but rather in spite of it, she pushed herself and showed her passion in bread and pastry making. After an initial employment at a Café in Sunway University, she is now in a new job in Singapore. She is 2018’s recipient of the Special Jury Award. Three other students were recognised through the MySkills Excellence awards, i.e. Pravindran Vasudevan, Rubba Sri Punaveswaran and Karthigan Jaishangkar. Pravindran had no background to any of the technical skills he now applies every day as an intern. While he may be reserved, he commands a lot of respect given his dedication and loyalty.

If there was one student who gave some degree of stress to Mr. Deva through his former teacher, it is no other than Khitiswaran Yogesvaran. It was his teacher Mr. Nada who got Mr Deva to enroll Khitis in MySkills. His teacher never failed to ask Mr. Deva about him. The “how is Khitis” question was akin to a knife being held at his throat, mused Mr. Deva. Today, Khitis proudly went up the stairs with his head held high together with all his friends.
Being in a class setting with a mixed group of students, most of whom are starved of attention, both at home and in school, a “teacher” certainly has its challenges. There is a time period when the students journey begins in the ‘pre-vocational’. Here they learn some basic literacy and numeracy skills bearing in mind that most have been left very far behind. And some of these challenges continue throughout their transformation in MySkills.

The “transformers” are both staff and volunteers. MySkills honours the dedication of volunteers through its Special Awards. This year’s three recipients are Mr Jayagobi for his 6 years of commitment to the youth through his electrical skills, Ms. Ranjani for contribution to the spiritual development of the female students through a creative engagement of the students with the Bhagavad Gita. And the students and staff look forward to her vegetarian meals brought without fail every Tuesday. Another “star” is Ms Punitha, a retired staff nurse dedicated to the transformation of the students at de Devine Café. She drives daily from Cheras to Brickfields to help in the F&B training and her motherly advise and relationship.

MySkills will always make a difference to the many marginalized youth, irrespective of ethnicity. With its 35 acres campus and facilities, MySkills look forwards to more youth to learn not only a skill but more importantly to begin a journey of transformation of their lives. Its various programmes, i.e. Electrical Wiring, Industrial Automation, Secretarial and Bakery Production provide a means of livelihood, together with other skills related with agriculture. It is the holistic transformation that sets MySkills apart for all who have completed the process. This year’s graduates totaled 103.

 

 

Veronica Anne Retnam
12122018

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