KUALA LUMPUR (Bernama): The Malaysian Medical Relief Society (Mercy Malaysia) is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year by hosting a variety of events to increase the interest and spirit of volunteerism among people of all ages.
It executive director Amran Mahzan said the initiatives include providing Ramadan relief to the needy in Yemen, Palestine, Bangladesh and Malaysia through food packs, worth RM250 per family.
"We hope to raise RM500,000 for the Ramadan relief donation.
"Last week, we distributed 600 food packs to 600 families in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh," he said at a press conference here Thursday (May 9).
He said Mercy Malaysia will also conduct an International Humanitarian Conference from Aug 5 to 7, featuring distinguished international and local speakers including its founder Tan Sri Dr Jemilah Mahmood, Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad, and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Malaysia head Thomas Albrecht.
This will be followed by a charity fundraising dinner on Sept 28, which will be graced by royal patron Sultan Perak Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah and Raja Permaisuri of Perak Tuanku Zara Salim, he said.
Mercy Malaysia vice-president II Datin Raja Riza Shazmin Raja Badrul Shah said that the organisation has been appointed late last year as a zakat collection and distribution agent by the Kedah Zakat Board and Perlis Islamic Religious Department.
She said the zakat (tithe) initiative is to provide an alternative source of funding for humanitarian works through efficient and trusted route for people to fulfil their zakat obligations, while ensuring their donations go to needy recipients.
"For the last 20 years since 1999, Mercy Malaysia has operated in over 32 countries, offering emergency medical response, post-disaster recovery and reconstruction, as well as disaster preparedness training," she said.
She said Mercy Malaysia's greatest achievement was when they became the first humanitarian organisation to provide medical response and build temporary houses after the tsunami tragedy hit Aceh, Indonesia, in 2014.
“We will continue to innovate as it (Mercy) turns 20 this year, by not only preparing for new horizons in disaster response and preparedness, but (also) ready for sharing knowledge about humanitarian aid,” she added. - Bernama