UNIVERSITI TENAGA NASIONAL, 9th March 2020- Around 30 students participated in Yayasan Sukarelawan Siswa (YSS) Sharing Session: Volunteering on a New Level that was held at Leisure Hall and started at 8.00 p.m. until 10.00 p.m. The panels of this event were YSS alumni which also consisted of UNITEN students.
The first panel was Siti Hajar who volunteered in Sabah in November 2019. Siti Hajar shared her experience boarding a military truck for 10 hours to a village she was assigned to. Activities that she and her team did during their stay such as building clotheslines from bed frames and repaired the staffroom at a school and repaired the village dam. She described the houses in the village as very poor-looking due to incomplete development. She said it is important to have skills because they might benefit others, especially with volunteerism.
Ragunath(Ragu) also went to Sabah with the same batch as Siti Hajar. Ragu shared that he was sent to Kampung Malubang where the majority were Muslims. He briefly explained the activities his team did there. One of them was the elder’s tourism night class where they taught the elders basic English where they could use it to communicate with foreigners since the village was known for its tourism. Ragu shared the legend of that village: Supirak, the other version of Tanggang, which was very interesting.
Another YSS volunteer, Luqman Nizar(Lulu) went to Semporna in 2018. He showed the participants the personal records of his stay there through his Instagram highlight. He said that most of the activities the volunteers did were almost the same as they had in their guidelines.
Next, Hafiz Roslee and Mas Hani Hazwani shared their mission to Vietnam for a month. Hafiz and Hani were sent to different places in Vietnam. They explained the clusters of YSS which are Education Cluster, Community Development/Improvement Cluster, Medical and Health Cluster, Agribio and Environment Cluster, Information Technology & Social Entrepreneurship Cluster and lastly, Crisis and Disaster management Cluster. Hani told the participants that it was important to focus on the mission because as a volunteer, she had no time to think about resting or wasting time. The pieces of advice given by those who volunteered in Vietnam were the key to survive volunteerism. Hafiz mentioned that the language was the main challenge he faced in Vietnam because most of the residents did not know English. “Right volunteer for the right job”, this phrase had been explained by Hafiz clearly indicating that a volunteer was sent to a certain area for a purpose with the ability that he or she had.
Before the sharing session ended, the Q&A session took place. The participants asked quite a few questions. One of them was the tips for the YSS interview. Hafiz shared that they need to understand the meaning of volunteerism. Other than that, they also need to remember the clusters of YSS, write down all their skills, wear smart casual and not necessarily speak fluently in English. After that session, the participants took pictures together before they took their meals and were dismissed.
Written by Nurul Anis Wahdah Nasir