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Thursday July 29, 2010

Sheraton Imperial receives award for outstanding care

SHERATON Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel was recently the proud recipient of the “2009 Outstanding Care for Community” award presented by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Asia Pacific at its annual Starwood Cares President Award.

The hotel’s general manager Wolfgang Boettcher represented the hotel in the glitzy award ceremony which was held in Singapore.

Despite their busy schedules, the associates at Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel have always made time to care and spare a thought for the underprivileged community.

The hotel stages various charity and community events annually and in 2009, embarked on a very special project, which earned them the award.

Having worked with various organisations on different projects, the hotel team wanted to embark on a plan which would go beyond just provision of food and assistance. As such, the hotel reached out to the Lighthouse Children Welfare Home Association (LCWHA), a safe home for vulnerable children where they can start a new journey away from their difficult backgrounds and environments, with a plan to not only provide the children with essential necessities and food but also provide them with skills so that they are able to learn and fend for themselves in the future.

One for the album: The children of Lighthouse Welfare Home with Datuk Jasani of SJ Grant Thornton and Boettcher.

Together with another corporate partner, SJ Grant Thornton, the Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel provided food, furniture and fixtures to LCWHA to ensure that the children have a comfortable place to live in as well as teach them how to be organised and tidy.

Thereafter, the hotel team also planned several separate sessions, volunteering their time to impart knowledge and educate the children on various skills: ranging from grooming and good communications, to learning basic household tasks and cooking.

To-date, there has been six sessions organised for these children. Each session focused on a different skill – public speaking, cooking, table etiquette, table setting, laundry (folding skills) and how to clean public areas of a hotel.

Another interesting expansion to the project was when Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur Hotel launched a meaningful three-month apprenticeship programme for children of its associates along with those from the Lighthouse Children Welfare Home Association.

This programme was aimed at providing assistance to hotel associates who found it challenging to send their children for further education (due to either financial hardship or the lack of academic qualifications).

The apprenticeship programme was opened to all youths between 16 and 27 years old the first batch, which ran from January to March 2010.

The programme is all about training future associates of the hotel and assisting them to discover their potential in the hospitality industry, so they may be equipped with the right tools of trade to build a career in the industry.

For the children of LCWHA, this programme serves as a stepping stone to a future career in the hospitality industry, specifically in the restaurant, kitchen and housekeeping departments. It will not only be an introduction to the hotel trade, but also serves as a catalyst for career advancement in Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.

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