Earlier this month, a 7.8-magnitude earthquake struck the border between Syria and Turkiye, causing severe losses and casualties to the people of both countries. Today, the number of casualties in both countries is still rising. The latest data has shown that the death toll has reached an astonishing more than 50,000.

During a meeting of the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH) executive directors on Feb 8, a decision was made to create a disaster relief fundraising committee led by our Vice President, Thay Peng Hong. In response to the serious disasters in Syria and Turkiye, we hope to drive local Chinese communities to support the delivery of aid to the earthquake victims. We at KLSCAH strive to uphold the humanitarian spirit, with the goal that this fundraising will raise two hundred thousand ringgit (RM 200,000.00). The donations are being handed over to MyCare, which will directly help the disaster victims in Syria and Turkiye.

After the press conference on Feb 10, the fundraising effort received enthusiastic responses from all manner of people. Within a short period, a total of three hundred fourteen thousand seven hundred and three ringgit (RM 314,703.00) was raised for the earthquake victims, thereby achieving and surpassing the original fundraising goal.

The KLSCAH Women Section and the Cultural & Education Committee have risen to the occasion. They responded to the call of our fundraising campaign, through further fundraising efforts, as well as a charity concert. As such, they have provided strong support for this fundraiser. We are truly grateful for the hard work and dedication of KLSCAH Women and the Cultural & Education Committee for their charity concert. The fundraising effort has flourished together with them, allowing us to accomplish the fundraising goal in quick succession.

KLSCAH will enter the 100th year milestone this year. Its role positioning is also in line with the country’s current social challenges. Until now, our work is focused towards civil societies, and consistent cooperation with multiracial non-governmental organisations (NGOs). Since 2009, we have initiated the establishment of the multiracial coalition Gabungan Bertindak Malaysia (GBM). And most recently, a string of strategic cooperative efforts together with IKRAM for the GE15 is a prime example. The Syria-Turkiye earthquake relief fundraiser launched by us aligns with the multiethnic cooperation that we are committed to all this time. These cooperative efforts have shown that regardless of the barriers such as region, race, religion and colour, humanity has overcome challenges in providing humanitarian aid to the earthquake victims of Syria and Turkiye. Thus, this is a demonstration – of compassion and the spirit of generosity – in sending help to those in their hour of need.

We want to highlight to everyone once more, that this press conference is a handover ceremony to transfer the donations to MyCARE, who will provide on-ground aid directly to the earthquake victims in Syria and Turkiye. We at the KLSCAH would like to thank the public for their positive responses. The public’s generosity has even warmed our hearts, while the positive feedback from everyone has unexpectedly surprised us. Despite being just a drop in the bucket, we hope that the humble amount raised through this fundraiser can help the earthquake victims in Syria and Turkiye to alleviate their hardships so that they can return to their daily lives as soon as possible. KLSCAH is also here to pray that the aftermath of this crisis will dissipate as soon as possible and that the earthquake victims will soon get through the storm.

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