How A Malaysian College Won an ASEAN Award for Combating COVID-19
Friday, November 13th was unlike any other this year. It was a night celebrating a select group of enterprises across the ASEAN region for outstanding achievements in their respective fields.
The ASEAN Business Awards 2020, held in Vietnam, honoured Brickfields Asia College (BAC) with an ASEAN regional award for Combating COVID-19 – how cool is that?
If you don’t know what that is – the ASEAN Business Awards (ABA) is a prestigious annual event recognised internationally and held by the ASEAN Business Advisory Council since 2007.
This is the kind of teamwork that gives me hope. Despite the pandemic, people banded together to help the most vulnerable communities in Malaysia —but BAC’s Managing Director, spearheaded these efforts, was impressed by his fellow Malaysians. “Honestly,” he told me in the interview, “this award goes to all the heroes who have helped us reach out to aid those in need during this pandemic; especially the millions of frontliners across the ASEAN region, who are working around the clock to keep us safe.”
“This year has been extremely challenging for everyone,” Raja Singham said. But “it was incredible to see the compassion people had for those in need.”
So, what did BAC do to win this award?
For starters, the college implemented a wide range of bold measures to help mitigate the socio-economic impact of the pandemic on vulnerable communities. Some of these include:
- BACFlix: the single largest free education initiative by the private sector. BACFlix manages six specialised online learning portals for Malaysian secondary school students and is fully funded by BAC.
- Veritas University College: As the world’s first Pay It Forward university, Veritas offers a deserving student free education whenever any student registers for a programme.
- Project DEEP RM 50 Million Education Fund: to upskill and reskill 10,000 unemployed Malaysians (for free) for the digital economy.
- Project Entrepreneur: to train and mentor 10,000 startups and existing entrepreneurs to adapt to the new normal.
- gradjobs.com.my: free job portal that aims to increase employability amongst fresh graduates.
- specialjobs.com.my: a free job portal that aims to increase employment among people with special needs by partnering with equal opportunity employers.
- Live is BAC: a non-profit initiative featuring a series of Malaysia’s first live shows since the lockdown aimed at supporting and kickstarting the livelihoods of Malaysian musicians, talents, creative crew, event-service suppliers, venues, event crew and support staff.
- GiveBACk.my: Founded to specifically address the needs of those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. This fundraising platform has raised over RM162,000 in funds for numerous causes and impacted more than 4,800 people.
- Tender Hearts Café: BAC allocated a space within its premises for Tender Hearts Café to help expand its operations to help recoup its losses during the lockdown and encourage a Persons with Disabilities (PWD) integration programme into the non-PWD world.
- Diversity and Inclusion Training for DIGI Telecommunications by MIRM: training for Digi’s staff to improve diversity and promote inclusivity at the workplace
- UNICEF Student Volunteer Engagement Programme: a series of offline and online programmes that are aimed to mobilise volunteers towards enabling relief & recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic by connecting university volunteer communities, harnessing local capacity and amplifying impact through UNICEF’s reach
- UNICEF COVID-19 Taskforce: part of a taskforce created by UNICEF Malaysia to develop solutions that resolve issues experienced by children during the COVID-19 pandemic.
It is only fitting that a Malaysian company received this award on the eve of Deepavali – a festival that symbolises the victory of light over darkness and celebrates kindness.
Well done BAC, for making Malaysia proud!
How can I help?
Help BAC ensure that no Malaysian gets left behind in these challenging times. Visit giveback.my to see how you can help empower people and create awareness of the needs of the voiceless.
Let’s do this, Malaysia!