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Home > Campus News: Media Releases 2010


 

Curtin Volunteers! fundraising event to support Sarawak AIDS Concern Society


Miri – 25 October, 2010 – Riding on the success of its fundraising event for the Sarawak Children’s Cancer Society last year, the Curtin Volunteers! (CV!), the student volunteer body of Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia (Curtin Sarawak), is holding another event this year, this time in aid of the Sarawak AIDS Concern Society (SACS). It will be at Bintang Megamall from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm on 30 October 2010.

 

As in previous years, the event will feature exciting games with attractive prizes for the public. In addition, there will be performances by the Curtin Cheerleading Club; a variety of dances, sketches and musical performances by Curtin students; as well as an AIDS awareness exhibition by SACS.

 

SACS is a non-profit organisation dedicated to addressing AIDS issues in Sarawak. It disseminates information on AIDS, promotes and protects the rights of people living with AIDS, and provides support to families affected by AIDS.

 

SACS project manager Rahmah Wahap-Nicholls said the organisation’s main aim is to dispel common myths about AIDS and change the ‘stigma’ mindset of society towards AIDS and HIV-positive patients.

 

“Based on an extensive outreach programmes we have conducted, it is apparent that there is widespread ignorance about AIDS and the work of SACS. We are often misunderstood as trying to dictate how people affected by AIDS should live their lives. Our distributing of condoms is often misconstrued as promoting pre-marital sex when we merely want the public to be more wary about AIDS and the precautions they should take against contracting the disease,” she said.

 

During the event, the Curtin Volunteers! will be collecting donations from members of the public, who are urged to lend their full support to the cause. The donations will go towards SACS’s outreach activities in the Miri and Baram districts.

 

“Patients in the interior are sometimes unable to come to the city to seeking treatment, citing the high transportation costs involved. We would like to use the funds to help alleviate their financial constraints and encourage them to seek necessary treatment,” said Rahmah.

 

As the major volunteer organisation at the University, Curtin Volunteers! has held annual fund-raising events to support various charitable organisations through the years. They include the Miri Old Folks Home, Methodist Children’s Home, Lembaga Kebajikan Anak-anak Yatim Sarawak (PERYATIM), the Miri Centre for the Blind, and the Palliative Care Association of Miri. 

 

According to event organising chairperson Wong Kah Wai, both the Curtin Volunteers! and the SACS look forward to a successful event full of fun and merriment this weekend.

 

“We invite everyone to come and give their support for the cause and have a great time partaking in the fun activities we have lined up,” he said.

 

Membership in the SACS is open to all and it will be conducting a recruitment drive during the event. The annual membership fee is RM2.50 for students below 18 years old, RM5 for adults and RM 20 for members of NGOs or associations. Alternatively, one can opt for a lifetime membership at RM50

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More information on the Curtin Volunteers! is available at www.curtin.edu.my or by e-mailing curtin.volunteers@curtin.edu.my.

 

Curtin Volunteers! (CV!) Sarawak Chapter is a student-run, non-profit organisation of Curtin Sarawak consisting of students and staff committed to supporting the community in the spirit of volunteerism. Since its formation in 2002, CV! has been actively involved in a variety of community service activities and programmes.

 

The Sarawak AIDS Concern Society (SACS) is a registered non-governmental organisation (NGO) involved in HIV/AIDS work. It was formed on the 19th May 1998 with the aim of addressing HIV/AIDS issues in Sarawak. The approach of the Society is non-judgmental and holistic in nature, focusing on preventive education and working with people living with HIV/AIDS.

The Society recognises that everyone is susceptible to HIV/AIDS regardless of age, race, gender or status in society. The Society intends to educate Sarawakians about the facts and myths regarding HIV/AIDS, to reduce the stigma attached to it and to promote effective preventative measures in dealing with HIV/AIDS.


Knowledge alone about HIV/AIDS is not sufficient in stopping the spread of the virus. Social conditions such as discrimination, stigmatisation of marginalized groups and unequal gender power are all part of the problem. It is the aim of the Society to address these issues and provide emotional support.