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Last updateWed, 11 Nov 2015 11am

TZU CHI MALAYSIA

Taiwan Buddhist Tzu Chi Foundation Malaysia (Tampin)

◎ History

Sister Yao Ci Ting, a primary school teacher, was the person who sowed the seeds of Tzu Chi in Tampin. On 2 September 1995 when Melaka Liaison Office officially formed the Tzu Chi Teachers' Association, Sister Yao was one of the participants. She turned out to be the only outstanding officer from the Teachers' Association who participated in the teacher root-seeking trip for five consecutive years.

In November 1995, Sister Yao participated in the root-seeking trip to Hualien, Taiwan, for Malaysian teachers for the first time. She was so touched during the trip that she proactively advocated Still Thought education upon her return to Malaysia. In addition to that, she encouraged teachers in her hometown to take on the task of aiding the poor and educating the rich, which is Tzu Chi's main mission.

However, Tzu Chi in Tampin did not have an office. Tzu Chi brothers and sisters held their meetings in gazebos in the park, shades under the trees or in coffee shops. Tzu Chi's nearest Liaison Office is in Melaka, which is about 40 km away. Travelling to and fro especially at night was dangerous, therefore the idea of looking for a branch office in Tampin surfaced.

Tzu Chi TampinIn order to create a place where Tzu Chi brothers and sisters could meet, learn and mingle with each other, Sister Ci Ting suggested renting a lot for this purpose. Coincidentally, one of the sisters had two shoplots to be rented out, and with the consent of her husband, the lots were offered to Tzu Chi to use as Liaison Office.

In order to inform Buddhist friends and philanthropists in Tampin about Tzu Chi's permanent local Liaison Office, an opening ceremony was held on May 25, 1999. Dozens of brothers and sisters from Melaka Branch, led by Brother David Liu and Sister Echo Chien, came to extend their best wishes. Ever since then, philanthropists in the area have participated in various Tzu Chi activities including house visits, recycling activities and hospital volunteer services, among others.

The number of Tzu Chi brothers and sisters in Tampin grew daily, and people from all walks of life have since joined Tzu Chi's Great Love fraternity, which included teachers, laundry workers, sewing ladies, coffee shop operators, hairdressers and others. Interestingly, most of the Tzu Chi volunteers here are teachers.

In 2002, Tampin Tzu Chi volunteers drew out five main community zones in Tampin. In December 2002, its liaison point was upgraded to a Liaison Office, strengthening the unity of community volunteers and easing the work of recruiting more people to carry out Tzu Chi work.