KUALA LUMPUR: There was a time when some Burmese minority ethnic groups were forced to flee to escape harsh living conditions in their country.
Among them are the Chin people, some of whom have found temporary refuge in Malaysia.
Berjaya Corporation Berhad staff today paid a visit to several Chin centres in the city to provide them with assistance.
Led by Berjaya chairman and chief executive officer Datuk Seri Robin Tan, the entourage which included senior management staff, spent about two hours visiting the Alliance of Chin Refugees (ACR) office, Mang Tha Centre and Chin Student Organisation (CSO).
ACR offers free medical treatment, education and skills-training programmes for Chin refugees, while CSO provides education opportunities to refugee children aged four to 17 in five community education centres in the Klang Valley.
Berjaya is currently sponsoring RM90,000 for a year's rental of the five centres and also provided RM20,000 worth of nutritional meal packs for ACR in October last year.
During the visit, Tan presented ang pow to the children and volunteers at ACR and CSO. They were also treated to a Kenny Rogers Roasters lunch.
Berjaya has been providing humanitarian aid locally and internationally to alleviate suffering and improving healthcare, especially during times of crisis and disasters.
Among its contributions are relief efforts for flood victims in the east coast, providing housing to Typhoon Sendong victims in the Philippines and assisting Japanese earthquake and tsunami victims.
Tan called on Malaysian to focus their contributions in providing assistance to those in need, regardless of their background or ethnicity.
"We can make the country better if more people contribute to a good cause. It is not just about money," he told theSun.
"Sometimes, just by contributing your time or your caring attitude, it could already help a lot of people. It is one of the things that we should all (bear in mind)," he added.
ACR chairman Andrew Laitha said although the political situation in Myanmar is improving, problems involving the basic rights of minority groups are still present.
"We are grateful that Malaysia gave us a second chance in restarting the life of the Chin minority," he said, adding that the country is regarded as among the best options for temporary refuge, compared to other countries in the region.