Curtin students team up with DBNA to help families impacted by pandemic

Miri – 7 October 2020 – Over 70 final-year degree students of Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) who are taking the Mata Pelajaran Umum or General Studies (MPU) ‘Team Leadership and Community Service’ unit, recently partnered with the Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA) Miri Branch to help needy families whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Their joint project involved a donation drive by the students to raise funds to purchase daily essentials for the needy families, and in collaboration with DBNA Miri Branch, distribute the items to eligible families.

DBNA Miri Branch has been providing aid to less fortunate Bidayuh families in Miri since April to lessen their burden during the MCO. Between April and May, the branch raised enough funds to help 90 families in Desa Senadin, Permyjaya, Tudan, Piasau, Kampung Bidayuh Lusut, Bukit Peninjau and Niah.

“DBNA Miri Branch is honoured to be invited to collaborate with the Curtin students on this project. Many less fortunate families have been adversely affected by the pandemic and we are glad to be able to help ease their burden,” said DBNA Miri Branch Vice-chairman Christopher Narang.

Meanwhile, one of the students involved in the project, Danny Jau Karing, commented that for students, getting involved in a community service project is not merely about helping those in need, but also an opportunity to develop teamwork and leadership skills.

“It is Curtin University’s mission to engage communities and change lives, and we proudly represented Curtin in fulfilling that mission here in Miri. At the same time, we learned a lot about ourselves and how important a concerted effort by everyone can be to the success of a project,” commented Danny.

Presenting the donations to the families on 4 October 2020 were Danny and another student, Jeremy Lim Zi Xian, and their lecturer, Valerie Velina Nagreg, who is the coordinator of the MPU units.

Also present were Christopher, DBNA Miri Branch secretary Caroline Siburat and exco members Derek Cornas, Albert Jeris and Valentino Ivan, and volunteer and trainee counsellor from UNIMAS, Martin Okoronkwo Elias A.

The Curtin Malaysia and DBNA representatives presenting donations to recipients at Tudan. (L-R) Caroline, Martin, Mathew Lagan (recipient), Jeremy, Winnan Cinhin (recipient), Valerie, Danny, Albert, Christopher and Valentino.

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