Mental health NGO also announces newly approved number 15995 to call for help
LIFE Line Association Malaysia (LLAM) successfully raised RM2.6mil at its 30th anniversary celebrations in Kuala Lumpur.
The non-governmental organisation (NGO) that focuses on helping people with mental health issues earlier pledged to raise RM2mil for a 24/7 hotline service aimed at providing better mental health support by 2025.
The overwhelming support of guests, including Nirvana Asia Group founder and executive chairman Tan Sri David Kong Hon Kong who donated RM1mil, helped LLAM reach its goal sooner than expected.
Kong said it was important for organisations like LLAM to provide continuous care and support for people with mental health problems and those contemplating suicide.
“I started brushing up my knowledge on mental health issues after listening to 98.8’s City Heartbeat show hosted by deejay Chan Fong.
“Then I came to know about LLAM and its ambition to provide all-day-long mental healthcare services.
“When I heard about difficulties it faced in raising funds to upgrade its hotline system, I donated RM1mil without hesitation,” said Kong during LLAM’s anniversary luncheon cum 95 Life Awareness Month at HGH Convention Centre, Kuala Lumpur.
Kong said LLAM served as a bridge between people with mental health problems and providing the proper help they need.
“I hope with my donation and the public’s generosity, LLAM will be able to provide a wider range of services to help those in need,” he added.
Kong also urged the government to walk the talk by giving more attention and allocation to upgrade mental health facilities around the country.
During the anniversary event, Kong presented the RM1mil mock cheque for his donation to LLAM, besides matching RM1 for every RM1 donated by guests, to bring the total sum raised to RM2.6mil.
Invited guests were also treated to a feast along with a series of performances.
LLAM president Choon Lee Meng shared that the association had secured a new hotline number 15995.
“I am happy to announce that the Communications and Digital Ministry has approved our application for a new hotline number last week,” she said.
“We will also be holding our first international event – Asia Pacific Telephone Counselling Conference in 2025.”
She said insufficient funds had made it challenging for LLAM to sustain its operations over the past three decades.
“Nevertheless, we are resilient and aspire for a greater future,” said Choon, who also thanked her fellow volunteers for their dedication through the years.
Meanwhile, LLAM deputy president Chua Chee Heng highlighted the alarming post-pandemic mental health and suicide statistics in Malaysia, while emphasising the importance of a 24/7 telephone counselling service.
“It is worrying that one in three adults is fighting against psychological illnesses and one in eight teenagers suffers from mental health problems.
“Worse still, one in 10 teenagers has had suicidal intentions.
“Therefore, it is of utmost urgency to establish a decentralised telephone counselling system to provide more efficient services for those in need,” he said.
Event organising committee president Ong San San pointed out various reasons why people facing mental health problems refused to seek help.
“Some are afraid of being judged while others are worried about the high cost of mental health therapy sessions.
“Thus, it is essential for us to provide free telephone counselling services for people in need to open up about their sufferings,” she said.
Based on a projection starting 2027, the upgraded hotline system, when successfully implemented, can benefit 25,000 people while saving at least 2,000 people with suicide tendencies.
Volunteers who served LLAM for five, 10, 15, and 20 years were also honoured for their contributions.
The number 95, which in Mandarin sounds like “save me”, represents LLAM’s core values in carrying out its community service work.
The NGO hopes to encourage more people with mental health problems to engage in self-help or seek help when needed.
LLAM's counselling number to call is 03-4265 7995.