Privilege to serve the underprivileged

Giving back to society: A group of young professionals, led by its co-ordinator Khairul (second left), guiding children at Surau Al-Muhajirin of Flat PPR Jalan Sungai in George Town, Penang.

GEORGE TOWN: He is an engineer by profession but during weekends, he spends his time teaching Mathematics to underprivileged children under a Penang Teach programme.

Mohd Nazrin Dolmat said he had a penchant for helping others, especially those who were less fortunate, since his university days.

The 25-year-old mechanical engineer said although he had his own career, he would not stop doing what he loved and took heart in.

“My early involvement started during my studies at Universiti Teknologi Mara in Permatang Pauh when the organiser of the programme came to enlist volunteers for the initiative.

“Having been involved in volunteerism activities since my school days, I signed up immediately,” he said in an interview at the centre at the Sungai Pinang PPR flats.

Mohd Nazrin still allocates some spare time to teach children despite having many commitments.

He said it was part of his efforts in giving back to society, especially to children from B40 families.

“Children from underprivileged families have similar potential to attain success, just like other children from well-to-do background.

“What society needs to do is motivate and give them encouragement. All of us should remember our beginnings, who we are and where we come from. This is the time for us to contribute and help one another,” he said.

His colleague, Mohd Ridzuan Ali Jinnah, said helping the less fortunate was something that he had been doing since his days at Universiti Malaysia Pahang.

“I was one of the first in my group to volunteer whenever there was an opportunity and programme to help underprivileged groups,” said the 27-year-old.

The temporary teacher at SMK Air Itam said he was part of the teaching team in the programme since late last year.

“It is a good platform for underprivileged children, who need quality teaching.

“I would like to see these children giving back to the community when they have succeeded in their careers.

“It would also serve as an inspiration for us if any of these children become a successful person,” said the Penang-born teacher.

One of the children who participated in the programme, Muhammad Lutfi Abu Bakar, said since he joined the class last month, his understanding of Mathematics had improved.

“Earlier, I was slow in catching up but with the modules provided here, I learnt to understand the subject better,” said the 11-year-old.

The SK Datuk Keramat pupil vows to do his best in exams.

Another participant, Nur Balqis Batrisiya Mohd Hussain, said she was happy to be able to join the class and that her favourite subject was Bahasa Melayu.

“I was taught how to write a better essay with the correct structure and grammar. The module is easy to learn,” said the 12-year-old.

Penang Teach coordinator Khairul Hilman Mohd Mokhtar, 26, said the programme started in November last year and was

fully sponsored by the Penang Islamic Foundation.

Khairul said other locations of the programme were Padang Cempedak, Guar Perahu, Nibong Tebal and the Ampang Jajar PPR flats.

“On average, we have about 20 to 30 students per class but due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we have to reduce the size of the class to half.

“The children have to take turns to attend classes every week,” he said.

Khairul said the children were aged between eight and 12 and that they were taught Mathematics, Bahasa Melayu and English.

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