With the aim of raising funds for UTAR Hospital, the Econsave and Sin Chew Daily Charity Show (Econsave星洲华教义演) was organised on 4 December 2021 at Dewan Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik, UTAR Kampar Campus. The Econsave and Sin Chew Daily Charity Show was jointly organised by Econsave, Sin Chew Daily, Guang Ming Daily and UTAR. The event saw the participation of over 300 participants and it was held with strict adherence to the standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Invited to officiate the opening ceremony was guest of honour-cum-Deputy Minister of Education I, Ministry of Education Malaysia Senator Dato’ Dr Mah Hang Soon representing Minister of Transport Datuk Seri Ir Dr Wee Ka Siong. Also present were UTAR Chancellor Tun Dr Ling Liong Sik, Consul General of the People’s Republic of China in Penang Dr Lu Shiwei, UTAR Education Foundation Board of Trustees Chairman Tan Sri Dato’ Dr Sak Cheng Lum, UTAR Council Chairman Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Dr Ting Chew Peh, UTAR Hospital Board Chairman Ir Academician Emeritus Prof Tan Sri Dato’ Dr Chuah Hean Teik, Econsave Cash & Carry Sdn Bhd General Manager Chua Yong Chiang, Sin Chew Executive Director-cum-Sin Chew Daily of Media Chinese International Ltd Chief Executive Officer Koo Cheng, Guang Ming Daily Sdn Bhd General Manager Cheah Chin Wah, UTAR President Ir Prof Dr Ewe Hong Tat; Distinguished Members of UTAR Education Foundation, board of trustees, UTAR council, and UTAR Hospital board; representatives of Econsave, Sin Chew Daily and Guang Ming Daily; distinguished donors, UTAR staff and members of the public.
Dato’ Mah mentioned, “I am very happy to see UTAR set up its own hospital. This will be able to cultivate outstanding medical and health sciences talents for our country, improve medicine and clinical research, as well as provide affordable and high-quality medical services to the community in Perak and the whole country.” He also congratulated the organisers for this meaningful event and urged the members of the public to donate to UTAR Hospital.
He revealed, “According to the demographic statistics released by the Department of Statistics, Malaysia (DOSM) in October, Perak is the state with the highest ageing population (up to 11%) in Malaysia. Kampar (12.9%) and Kinta (12.3%) have become the two districts with the highest elderly population in Perak. DOSM also predicts that our country will face the challenge of an ageing population by 2030. At the same time, due to the pandemic situation over the past two years, we have become more aware of the importance of improving the medical system and local specialised medical services. Therefore, it is very timely to build a comprehensive hospital in Kampar, as Kampar is located in a strategic location which is surrounded by many communities in need of enhanced medical services.”
Expressing his appreciation to the participants for their attendance and support especially during this pandemic period, Chua said, “Econsave collaborated with Sin Chew Daily to organise four charity shows every year since 2017 to raise funds for schools in need, with the hope that it will serve as a starting point for the community to contribute to education. We are honoured to be part of this fundraising event for UTAR Hospital, a meaningful initiative to nurture medical talents as well as provide medical services to the community and nation. UTAR Hospital is expected to become a pivotal hospital for the locals, and bring development to Perak.”
Koo gave a brief introduction of the Econsave and Sin Chew Daily Charity show and said, “We have achieved many ‘first time’ for this event and it is memorable. This is the ‘first’ Econsave and Sin Chew Daily Charity Show after two years since the pandemic outbreak; ‘first’ fundraising for the university; the first charity show (义演) for UTAR Hospital and the first time for us to conduct the charity show physically and virtually. I am looking forward to the completion of UTAR Hospital that will cultivate medical talents and benefit the community by providing quality and affordable medical services.”
“In terms of education, Sin Chew Daily and UTAR share the same goal by different routes, and adhere to the concept ‘education shouldn't be sacrificed even if we're poor’ (再穷不能穷教育). Besides assisting the schools in fundraising, Sin Chew Daily Education Fund (星洲日报教育基金) also cooperated with higher learning institutions like UTAR to provide scholarships and bursaries for needy and qualified students,” he added.
In his welcome remarks, Prof Ewe said, “On behalf of the University, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Econsave, Sin Chew Daily, Guang Ming Daily and all the donors for their support. We have successfully raised RM1,666,888.00 for the UTAR Hospital project, and we are looking forward to receiving more donations when the event is broadcast virtually. Since the establishment of UTAR, we have always adhered to the belief ‘by the people, for the people’, and the UTAR Hospital is one of the important measures of the University to give back to society. Currently, the construction of the hospital is progressing smoothly, and the T&CM Centre is nearly completed. The Chinese Medicine services and psychological counselling services which will take place in the T&CM Centre are expected to operate after the Chinese New Year next year, and the medical centre for western medicine is expected to be put into operation in early 2023.”
The ceremony continued with the donation of 50 pieces of calligraphy paintings by Master Chi Chern (继程法师) from Taiping for auction to collect funds for UTAR Hospital. Master Chi Chern kick-started the donation by buying the first piece of the calligraphy painting worth RM10,000.
At the climax of the opening ceremony, all distinguished donors were invited to the stage for the Lighting, Drum and Gong Ceremony, a ceremony held to show appreciation for their kind support and donation to UTAR Hospital.
Tan Sri Sak and his friends Mr Chow Kam Leong and Mr Choong Cheong Vong, the CVS Trio, gave a beautiful performance after the opening ceremony. They sang beautifully to a medley of Cantonese and English songs. The exquisite guitar strumming, and the excellent tone and sound quality from the electric guitars along with the strong vocals made the whole performance top-notch. The audience clapped and sang along to the songs that brought back memories of the 1980s.
The most anticipated moment of the show was the performance of Chan Ai Chia (曾爱佳), who is well-known as Malaysia’s Teresa Teng. She has performed numerous famous songs by Teresa Teng, including I Only Care About You (我只在乎你), Sweetly (甜蜜蜜), The Story of a Small Town (小城故事)、and Good Bye My Love (再见我的爱人), to name a few. The audiences were fascinated by her beautiful singing as well as the brilliant stage design. Mr Seah Kok Boon (谢国文), who is also known as Malaysia’s Fei Yu-ching was also invited as a guest performer. Both of them provided the audiences with a spectacular stage show.
The performances will also be broadcast via YouTube channels and Facebook pages of Sin Chew Daily, Guang Ming Daily and UTAR on 12 December 2021, from 3.00pm to 5.00pm.
UTAR Hospital is a non-profit hospital that will not only provide medical and health services to the community but also provide practical training for the University’s medical students in the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences. The establishment of UTAR Hospital will also benefit Kampar and the surrounding communities with increased socio-economic activities and better access to quality medical services.
For more information on UTAR Hospital and donations to the hospital, please go to the following website: https://hospital.utar.edu.my/