Pharmaceutical firm pledges to help UV with ovens and tools

  • Community
  • Thursday, 30 Oct 2008

VOLUNTEERS from among the staff of pharmaceutical company Pfizer Malaysia joined members of United Voice (UV), a self-advocacy society of persons with learning disabilities, for a baking class recently.

The bakery class proved to be two hours of flour-filled fun.

Food expert, published author, and executive chef Nicholas Pillai patiently taught the group how to make four types of delectable breads - foccacia, soft rolls, sausage rolls as well as cheese and onion scones.

Let’s do it: Members of United Voice kneading dough together at the delay.baking workshop.

The volunteers, who call themselves the SWAT team, split themselves and the UV members into four groups and worked in a buddy system to prepare the dough, roll them into shapes, mix them with condiments such as sesame seeds and sausages and fill up the waiting trays.

It wasn’t long before Nicholas’ large kitchen was filled with the delicious smell of baking bread.

The baking class is the first of three baking lessons which are part of a skills-transfer programme aimed at equipping UV members with practical skills which they can use to earn a living for themselves.

Have a bite: Members of the United Voice and the SWAT team of of Pfizer Malaysia showing the fruits oftheir labour after the baking workshop.

Among other classes scheduled for the future are photography, IT and hand-made jewellery.

As part of the skills-transfer programme Pfizer has pledged to buy industrial ovens and baking tools for United Voice so that the members can put their new-found baking skills into practice.

“Once the business is set up, our Pfizer colleagues have promised to buy the pastries and other baked goods for our internal catering purposes. This is to ensure that UV will have a sustained source of income,” Pfizer’s corporate affairs manager Noor Yang Azwar Kamarudin said.

United Voice members include persons with Down’s syndrome, autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, cerebral palsy and global developmental delay.