Saturday, Oct 21st

Last updateWed, 11 Nov 2015 11am

Sunday, 06 November 2016 00:00

Aid Recipients Turned Recycling Volunteers

Written by  Chen Li Ping, Melaka / Translated by Tan Heang Shin

Anas (left) received the award on stage with his two younger brothers. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]

“I will work harder and come back again for the award,” exclaimed a delighted Awais. The recognition not only motivated him to improve his studies further but also to help out in house chores. The mother has encouraged her children to partake in recycling, hoping that they will learn to protect the Earth and cherish the award which is hard to come by.


On the fourth Sunday morning every month, Tzu Chi volunteers would arrive at Taman Limbongan Permai as usual to set up the recycling point. They would proceed to Nor Nazrin Lim bte Abdullah’s house and call her. Not long after, three primary schoolchildren would emerge and report themselves.

Two years ago, as her husband did not have a stable job and Nazrin’s income was meagre, the school fees for her five children were a heavy burden for the family. Out of desperation, she turned to Tzu Chi for help. Tzu Chi then recommended her children for Tzu Chi Study & Award Scheme to ease her financial burden.

Nazrin later let her children contribute at Tzu Chi Recycling Point. She said, “I want them to partake in recycling. I hope they learn to care for the Earth and reduce pollution to the environment. I want them to know that the financial aid is not something that comes by easily hence they must treasure it and if possible, go and help others.” She knows that the learning outside classroom can only be appreciated through personal involvement.

The close proximity to the recycling point, coupled with the volunteers’ selfless contribution, have put Nazrin’s mind at ease.

Motivated by volunteers’ loving-kindness

Being the third child in the family and studying Primary 6, the shy Muhammad Anas bin Abdul Malik expressed his love for recycling. He stated, “Through paper recycling, I learnt that it can reduce the felling of trees. This would help preserve the habitat and jungle, as well as, minimize air pollution.” As he is also an animal lover, he hopes to play his part for the animals and environment.

Muhammad Awais Amin bin Abdul Malik, the fourth child and a Primary 4 student, is always earnest in doing recycling although he may seem mischievous at times. He shared, “I learnt to sort recyclables, protect the Earth and not to litter.”

“I like the volunteers as they taught me recycling. They care for me and my studies too,” Awais continued. With so many children at home and their mother busy earning money, volunteers’ love has filled the emotional void in the kids. Nazrin told the volunteers that even though Awais is the naughty and impatient one, he has never missed Tzu Chi Recycling Day.

Nazrin also informed the volunteers that Awais was punished by the school teacher for tearing his exercise book. Volunteers then asked Awais to pen down his regretful thoughts and read it aloud. While reading, Awais could not help but burst into tears as he felt deeply remorseful for breaking his promise.

Volunteer Tang Dee Hui expressed, “I have known Awais for two years only but I could feel that he is yearning for care. Perhaps this is the reason why he was never absent from recycling!”

Shuaib Ameem Lim, the fifth child and a Primary 2 student, shared that it was indeed tiring to get up so early on a Sunday but he has persisted for almost two years. He said, “I would sort out the recyclables like plastics and paper at home.” The petite Shuaib would often go to the neighbours’ house to collect recyclables on Recycling Day.

He is also interested with the recyclables sent to the recycling point especially story books. Volunteer Loh Seo Kim shared, “He once came across a comic book and brought it home to read. To test him, we actually asked him to share a story from the comic book with us and he did! He brought a nicely handwritten story on the following Recycling Day and this was so touching.” To Seo Kim, caring for the children is equally important as educating them on recycling.

Worked hard for the recognition

This was the second time Anas received the award. According to the mother, Anas has been studying very hard in order to continue receiving the award. He has shown tremendous improvement in all subjects, especially Chinese and Mathematics.

“This was my first time on stage and I was very nervous. But I will continue to work hard as I want to come up to the stage to receive the award again,” Awais said joyfully. An excited Awais promised to work hard and to take good care of the Tzu Chi record booklet. He was recommended for the award last year but he misplaced the booklet thus missed the opportunity.

“He has improved slightly in his studies. However, it is very obvious that he has become more obedient and knows how to look after his younger brother. He also helps out in housework during his free time,” Nazrin remarked. She was very happy with Awais’ performance but felt that there is still room for improvement.

She said, “They would not help out in any housework previously but now they are willing to do it. This is because they need to update in the booklet on what they do hence the change in their attitude. The home is much tidier now and they are even willing to do recycling, putting their knowledge into practice at home.”



Seeing her children going on stage one by one to receive the award, tears welled up in Nazrin’s eyes. She expressed, “I thank Tzu Chi for alleviating my burden irrespective of religion. I am deeply moved by their loving act. I will encourage my kids to join in more Tzu Chi activities. Although we are not well-to-do, we can still dedicate our time and energy to help others.”

 

Anas and his two younger brothers have helped out at the recycling point on the monthly Recycling Day. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]   Awais has enjoyed contributing his efforts towards Mother Earth with other volunteers. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]

Anas and his two younger brothers have helped out at the recycling point on the monthly Recycling Day. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]
 
Awais has enjoyed contributing his efforts towards Mother Earth with other volunteers. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]
 
Nazrin felt extremely thankful for Tzu Chi’s financial aid for her five children. She hopes to reciprocate the kindness shown with her children’s involvement in more Tzu Chi’s activities. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]  

Nazrin felt extremely thankful for Tzu Chi’s financial aid for her five children. She hopes to reciprocate the kindness shown with her children’s involvement in more Tzu Chi’s activities. [Photograph by Hong Geok Hui]