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Tuesday December 9, 2008
By LIM CHIA YING
THIS year for a difference, try wishing Merry Christmas with cuddly teddy bears and do something for charity at the same time. Sheraton Subang Hotel & Towers and Kiwanis Bukit Kiara have jointly organised a charity drive through sales of cute bears, of which all proceeds will be channelled to the National Autism Society of Malaysia (Nasom).
The charity drive, themed “Christmas with a Heart for Charity”, was launched recently at the hotel lobby that started with the lighting-up of the eight-feet tall crystal Christmas tree decorated with colourful ornaments.
Gracing the event was Subang Jaya state assemblyman Hannah Yeoh.
Hotel operations director Kumar Renoo said the tree-lighting ceremony and the charity drive was done annually.
“Last year for instance, we raised funds for the National Kidney Foundation. Because of the charity element, the lighting is often done earlier than usual.”
Nasom executive director Anne Liew said the non-profit, non-governmental organisation was established in 1986 by a group of parents, professionals, and concerned citizens with the mission of providing lifelong services to all people with autism.
Its objective is to increase awareness on autism together with newly-established and newly-developed approaches in diagnosis, assessment, education, and treatment for people with autism.
“We rely mainly on donations from the public, social clubs, and corporations, to help in the running of our 18 centres nationwide,” said Liew.
“Nasom is today servicing about 500 children with autism, aided by our 180 teachers and staff members.
“We thank the hotel for naming us as their beneficiary for this charity drive. It’s our aim to help these children lead a dignified and independent life,” she added.
A group of children with Nasom was also present to mark the occasion.
Yeoh, in her speech, said Christmas was a time where people would be more blessed when they give than receive.
“However, charity should not be confined to just festive seasons, we should learn to give all the time,” Yeoh said.
The bear is sold at RM12 each.
Besides the charity sales, the hotel is also selling Christmas goodies with staples like traditional Christmas puddings with vanilla sauce, English minced pie, traditional roast turkey, cinnamon star cookies, and gingerbread house, available from RM6++
Its outlets will also be cooking up a storm of cuisines during Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
The hotel’s entire lobby and various sections of the hotel had all been dressed up in glittery and colourful decor to put one in the Christmas mood.
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