The enthusiasm of the participants and the generosity and goodwill of sponsors, donors, volunteers and supporters made the International Medical University (IMU) Chariofare 2014 an event to remember and raised more than RM170, 000 for three deserving local charities (Pertubuhan Hospice Negeri Sembilan, Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-Kanak Cacat Taman Megah, Dignity for Children Foundation) and the IMU Cares Disaster Fund. The funds raised were presented to the three local charities at a Cheque Presentation Ceremony hosted by IMU on 4 December 2014. At the cheque presentation ceremony, those in attendance watched a short video presentation of the 2014 event and listened to a short introduction of each beneficiary. A cheque of RM40,000 was then presented to each representative from the three charities. At the same time, members of the organising committee were presented with certificates of appreciation in recognition of their hard work and effort which made Chariofare ‘14 a success. President of the Organising Committee and an IMU medical student, Kenneth Lee, said “Chariofare on 20 September this year was a great success, and we are all extremely proud that we could raise more than RM170,000 for our beneficiaries. It was a pretty long and difficult journey, but at the end of the day, when we realised how much of an impact we actually made, and how much fun everyone had on the day, it was all worth it. It was a pleasure to work with the staff, faculty and students of IMU, and I hope that IMU Chariofare can have continued success for years to come.”’ One of the beneficiaries, Pertubuhan Hospice Negeri Sembilan, is a voluntary non-profit, non-governmental Hospice Care established in 1998. The focus is on providing quality of life to cancer patients not responsive to curative treatment. Since 1998, they have provided support to patients living within a 10 kilometre radius of Seremban, their care-givers and their families. Dr Anthony Gilbert from Pertubuhan Hospice Negeri Sembilan said “The Hospice is on the continuous lookout for funds to run the service without interruption. There is a tremendous increase in the patient load. We are in need of more nurses as at the moment as we are having more than 100 patients per month. And this is increasing monthly. There is an increasing demand for analgesics, (pain killers), oxygen cylinders for patient care. The NGO is looking forward to change the van that is very old. This van is to ferry volunteers, nurses, carry equipment to patients’ homes and also to take the nurses and volunteers to attend seminars and courses.” Dr Anthony lauded the philanthropic efforts of IMU and mentioned that the funds will be used to purchase four oxygen concentrators, nutritional milk and medicine for poor patient, as well as medical disposals. Currently, there are Semester 9 IMU students who visit the hospice as part of their palliative care medicine for 2 weeks and make case presentations on their visits. Future plans with this NGO include the development of a cancer website, information leaflets or books for dissemination to the patients’ families during the house visits and a video of hospice activities with student involvement. Another beneficiary at the ceremony is Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-kanak Cacat Taman Megah. This is a home for the less fortunate and disabled children/adults. At this home, the underprivileged and special children are provided with education. The children under care are assured of medical care and a comfortable environment to live in. Plans are progressing quite well with regards to a new home for these children with the help of kind and generous donations from the public. Ms Umah Kumar from Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-kanak Cacat Taman Megah said, “We are in dire need of equipment for the use of our special children and with your generous donation, we will be able to purchase them. The funds donated will be used for equipment such as platform mounted parallel bars, convertible stairs, professional electric tilt tables, electric muscle stimulator, ultrasound therapy equipment, wheel chair and compressor nebuliser with mask.” Currently, IMU staff and students have successfully participated in different activities at Pusat Penjagaan Kanak-kanak Cacat Taman Megah such as medicine management, chiropractic assistance, nursing assistance, clinical room arrangement, health talk and entertaining the children. Ms Petrina Satvinder from Dignity for Children Foundation explains, “This Foundation aims to empower underprivileged urban poor children to break the cycle of poverty through quality education, positively transforming their lives and the lives of the community around them. Dignity achieves this by establishing high quality learning centres under one roof for the poor; implementing specialised learning environments to develop children academically and socially thus empowering them to become productive members of society. Dignity would use the amount donated to establish a medical fund for the urban poor and underprivileged children. The fund will definitely be of great financial assistance in helping the community with their medical bills and treatment. The RM40,000 donated by IMU will be used to establish a medical fund for the urban poor and underprivileged children and their families.” Currently, IMU staff and students have successfully conducted several activities in Dignity which includes a Health Talk, a Peace Camp, Faisal cup and dental screening. Besides the visits to DFC, activities had also been planned to provide fun to the DFC children at IMU (IMU Open Day, Lego the Movie, Art Festival, Chariofare). Chariofare is an annual event of IMU Cares to raise money for identified charities. It consists of a charity run and a charity fair. The event is managed by a Student Organising Committee comprising primarily of Semester 1 students with IMU staff as advisors. The food and games fun fair is run by both staff and students. Public participation is also important for its success. For the last 3 years, the total amount raised had been in the region between RM100, 000 – RM150,000. The entire proceeds go to charity. Chariofare typically attracts around 2,500 participants of public, students and staff and their families. Chariofare also gets a lot of support from the community and from industry. Read more about the event by clicking here.