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FOR YEAR 2018

Stakeholder Report STARFISH MALAYSIA FOUNDATION

EDUCATE

ELEVATE

EMPOWER

marginalised communities in East Malaysia


MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIRMAN

It has been half a decade since Starfish Malaysia Foundation found its roots in Sabah. 2018 was important because it was a year of consolidation since our inception. On our vision to ‘EDUCATE’, we now have five hostels under our wings - two primary school hostels and three secondary school hostels. The exciting expansion also saw a need for additional staff members on the ground. Before the end of 2018, we increased our warden head count to 12 people, with a minimum of two people managing each hostel. We believe in empowering local Sabahans to take on this pivotal role of shaping the next generation, hence all our wardens are native Sabahans with a heart to serve. We are grateful for their commitment and hard work. The student head count in our hostels grew steadily and maintained at over 120 students by year end. Vegetables harvested from our farm in Solimpodon, Pitas have greatly helped to reduce our monthly food cost in each hostel. Students enjoy a variety of fresh vegetables such as brinjals, long beans and cucumbers. On the Sarawak front, Lighthouse Kapit (LHK), a youth centre in Kapit town has been abuzz with children and youth programs led by different partners. We made headway and through the programs, reached out to over 800 people in community. We now have two full-time and one part-time staff member together with the help of casual cleaners and gardener helming the work there. Former US President Barack Obama once said: “If you’re walking down the right path and you’re willing to keep

walking, eventually you’ll make progress” . It is important to keep in check that we’re always on the right path because this road is long, windy and requires a lot of grit and persistence. Hence, 2018 was important to consolidate and take stock. We are committed to ‘Educate, Elevate, and Empower’ the marginalised in East Malaysia and we will celebrate the wins along the way as we continue to make progress and positive impact on people and communities. It is without a doubt that progress and success requires team work. Nothing is achieved alone and I’m proud of every team member - on the ground, in the office and also our management team for their tireless dedication and diligence. We are deeply grateful to our sponsors, partners and volunteers who have come alongside us, believed in the vision and supported us. We are all in this together and we will strive for greater things in the future. With sincere thanks,

Jimmy Lei Chairman


2018 AT A GLANCE January

Hostel Sunflower at Sikuati, Kudat began full operation ‘Standing Strong Through Storms Seminar’ at Lighthouse Kapit (LHK) organised by Scripture Union (SU) and SPECS Bhd for 65 facilitators. This is a continuous program throughout the year 1st Women fellowship program at LHK for 14 women

February

Hostel Lily in Kg Mangkapon, Pitas began full operation

March

Sabah Warden Retreat (combining with wardens from other hostels in Sabah)

Teachers’ Christian Fellowship (TCF) visit to Starfish’s project sites

Visit by Interserve to Hostel Jasmine Talantang and Hostel Marigold Solimpodon Youth camp for 54 secondary students at LHK by SU and Iban Revival Ministry.

April

First Starfish Sponsors’ Trip ‘Project Mini Library’ by Kiwanis KL at PCS-Starfish’s 3 secondary school hostels ‘Teachers Leadership Training’ at LHK conducted by Teachers' Christian Fellowship KL Hope Church, Kapit combined camp for 120 members and visitors at LHK

May

‘Edu Camp’ at Hostel Jasmine Talantang by Royal Rangers from Glad Tidings Klang Medical Camp at Hostel Sunflower Sikuati jointly organised by Life Empowerment Berhad and Sabah Pharmaceutical Society Children camp for 72 primary school children at LHK by SU & SPECS

June

Bible Camp at Hostel Rose Kudat for PCS-Starfish hostels organised by PCS Children’s Camp at Hostel Lily Mangkapon organised by Collective KL Leadership Camp at Hostel Sunflower Sikuati organised by Georgetown Baptist Church Music workshop by Juwita Suwito & team for 35 leaders at LHK

July

Visit and donation of computers by Acer Malaysia Children Camp by SU and SPECS at LHK for 84 primary school children Youth Seminar conducted by Borneo Care for 130 young people at LHK

August

Intensive Tuition at Hostel Rose Kudat for PCS-Starfish hostels led by TCF Hostel Rose Kudat and Hostel Sunflower Sikuati’s students participated in ‘Penuaian Jiwa Borneo’ held in Kudat Youth Camp at LHK by Methodist Theological School, Sibu Training program for 32 from women’s fellowship at LHK.

September

2nd Starfish Sponsors’ Trip Talk on agriculture held in LHK attracting more than 40 participants Study trip and cultural exchange visit by students from Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia to Hostel Sunflower Sikuati

October

Music workshop at LHK to equip local Kapit churches

November

Bible Camp for Hostel Jasmine Talantang organised by Kajang AOG

Children Camp at LHK for 90 primary school children conducted by SU Kapit & SPECS

Youth ‘Encounter Camp’ at Hostel Sunflower Sikuati organised by Georgetown Baptist Church Annual outing for Hostel Jasmine Talantang students and Hostel Lily Mangkapon’s graduating students to Lok Kawi Wildlife Park sponsored by SIB Likas Womens Ministry and Life Empowerment Berhad Graduation ceremony for Standard 6 and Form 5 students at respective hostels Get together fellowship dinner at LHK for 32 people from Association of Churches Sarawak, Kapit Branch.

December

Christmas dinner and fellowship for Starfish team in Kudat Teenstreet camp for Hostel Rose Kudat and Hostel Marigold Solimpodon’s students Completed refurbishment of half basketball court, gutters and additional water tanks for Hostel Marigold Solimpodon. Completed renovation and hall extension at Hostel Jasmine Talantang Completed replacement of new roof at Hostel Sunflower Sikuati


STARFISH HOSTELS As part of our effort to provide education access to all, we have

Educate

built and is now operating hostels in the north part of Sabah. These hostels are separate from the schools and they are located within minutes from local schools. They provide a safe, wholesome and

Poverty and education are inextricably linked, because people living in poverty may stop going to school or not even attend school so they can work or help to care for younger siblings. In Sabah, the problem is magnified because of poor road access. Children living in the rural areas often have to travel a long way to get to school. Some live as far as three hours walk away and getting to the nearest school on a daily basis becomes a tiresome feat. Statistics show that children from rural areas are twice as likely to dropout or not attend school as children from urban areas. This leaves them without literacy and numeracy skills that are essential for their careers.

conducive environment for students to develop and thrive in their studies. We currently have five (5) hostels in Kota Marudu, Pitas and Kudat districts. Children and youth living in our hostels are given nutritious meals, additional tuition and holistic programs - on top of the love and care from our wardens. Graduating primary students can continue to other secondary school hostels with the help of our reference and graduating secondary school students will either continue in upper-secondary education and vocational training in Sabah or West Malaysia. We are committed to seeing our students succeed from education to landing a job. When it comes to developing and grooming the next generation, it takes a lot more than just good infrastructure. To ensure the wholesome development and growth of our students, we believe in strategic partnerships that contribute to the success of our hostels. There are four essential pillars for sustained success when it comes to running our hostels. Partnerships are forged between:

PARENTS Parents are crucial if not the most vital part of a child’s development. We meet with our students’ parents regularly to update, discuss and chart their child’s development and well being.

Accessing education is not easy in many poor and rural areas in Sabah. Widening access to education is a key method in reducing poverty. We are excited to align our vision to educate the next generation with the United Nation’s global Sustainable Development Goals (SGD) movement on Education (4) that is to “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”.

WARDEN As the primary guardian of the students, our wardens play a pivotal role in ensuring that the hostel is a safe haven. They ensure the smooth running of the hostel and put in place disciplines and routines to facilitate growth. SCHOOL On the academic front, we build good rapport with the schools that our students go to by attending parentteacher meetings and initiating discussions with the principal and teachers in order to keep abreast with our students’ performance. CHURCH We develop strong relationships with the nearby church and its leaders because we believe that a child’s holistic development include a sturdy grip on their faith & beliefs.


2018 SNAPSHOTS

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STARFISH HOSTELS

A Closer Look We officially started operations of two new hostels in 2018 that is Hostel Sunflower Sikuati and Hostel Lily Mangkapon. We spent the first half of the year establishing structure, systems and routines in the hostels and strengthened our data collection for better reporting. We invested time and effort in training and mentoring our wardens in all aspects of running a hostel and caring for students to ensure long term sustainability. A great deal of the work involves understanding the people, their challenges and fabric of life. We thread carefully and consciousness as we work hand in hand to craft a better future for the next generation.

Special note: All three secondary school hostels are in partnership with The Protestant Church in Sabah (PCS) Assessments & development: Wardens - Our wardens are assessed bi-annually to help them improve and gain the skills needed to excel in their role. Students - All students staying in our hostels are also assessed bi-annually with the intention of developing and grooming them holistically.


STARFISH HOSTELS

A Closer Look In 2018, with the generous donation of computers and books given by various organisations, our students now have the chance to learn basic computer skills and adopt the love for reading. It is our great joy to also send one of our Form 5 graduate to further her studies in Kuala Lumpur pursuing a certificate in baking and culinary skills with the Vocational Training Opportunity Centre (VTOC). We are constantly on a lookout for partner organisations and individuals to explore opportunities for school leavers to obtain vocational or practical training, scholarships and job opportunities. Contact us if that’s you. Towards the end of 2018 also saw a refurbishment and renovation of some of our hostels. We extended the hall in Hostel Jasmine Talantang to provide a larger space for camps and to accommodate the potential growth of admission. Hostel Marigold Solimpodon now has a new badminton / sepak takraw cum half basketball court for recreation. The installation of additional seven water tanks plus gutters to harvest rainwater has helped with the water woes. At Hostel Sunflower Sikuati, an on-going problem with old leaking iron roof was finally solved with a new roof replacement.


LIGHTHOUSE KAPIT

The vision of Lighthouse Kapit is to bring wholesome transformation by engaging, equipping and empowering various groups within the community via economic, social and holistic programs.

Lighthouse Kapit is Starfish Malaysia Foundation’s only project in Sarawak which began in January 2017. We learned about Kapit’s staggering social ills ranging from drug abuse to rising teenage pregnancies to high school dropout rates. Instead of focusing on the looming problems, we saw it as an opportunity in disguise to empower and develop the next generation by providing a safe space for them to learn, mingle, develop skills and build strong values. The centre works as a hub for these activities and we partner with various NGOs, churches, organisations and experts to carry out these programs. Lighthouse Kapit is managed by two separate boards - the Management Board (admin, financials & governance) and Board of Ministries (program management & creation). The members within these two boards include representatives from Starfish Malaysia FOundation, FGBMFI Malaysia, TRAC Mission Board (Methodist WM), Sarawak Iban Methodist Church, Sarawak Chinese Methodist Church, Iban Baptist Church, SIB Sarawak and Scripture Union. How To Get To Kapit? Fly to Sibu and catch an express long boat service and journey 3 hours inland up the Rejang River to reach Kapit. Kapit is the administrative capital town for Kapit Division which is the largest division in Sarawak. It has a population of (estimate) of 115,000 (2010 census) and just 18,000 (2013) in Kapit town.


LIGHTHOUSE KAPIT

2018's Happenings at Lighthouse Kapit


OUR SUSTAINABLE PLAN

ELEVATE: A Socio-Economic Project As part of our self-sustaining economic model for our hostels, we cultivated the land surrounding Hostel Marigold Solimpodon by planting organic vegetables such as corn, long beans, okra, brinjal, bottle gourd, cucumber, pumpkin & winter melon. As a form of elevating the community around the hostel, we hire local farmers from the village and provide them with steady income.

In 2018, our students from all five hostels enjoyed fresh vegetables from the farm. The harvest was bountiful and was sufficient to supply to all the hostels. Surplus harvest was then sold to locals in Pitas or other outlets in Kota Kinabalu.

Year 2018 Year 2017

2,100

kg of vegetables supplied to all Starfish hostels

7,434 kg of vegetables supplied to all Starfish hostels

8 number of local farmers hired


YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE

Sponsor A Student Program

We believe all children deserve a right to education, proper nutrition, love and care. The children and youth that we work with come from disadvantaged families and a lot stacked against them. Education can be the catalyst

"We saw first-hand just how impactful the programs are for the children holistically and also the various sustainable agriculture initiatives that empowered the community." - Laura -

“…thank you for taking us for the visit. I’m very proud of what you have done and very surprised that we actually have a sustainable hostel for the kids. I’m very happy to be part of the sponsorship program and looking forward to participate more.” - JAH -

needed to break the poverty cycle. It gives children and youth a reason to dream of a better future and the confidence needed to pursue a career. Every month, it takes up to RM300 per student to provide three wholesome meals a day, additional tuition classes, a comfortable bed to sleep, electricity and running water. Our students pay RM50 per month as a token of commitment. The remaining RM250 is where you come in. The Sponsor-aStudent program empowers individuals to directly make a difference by committing RM250 per month to support a student. Our sponsors have the privilege of journeying with the child / youth and bi-annually, we organise Sponsors’ Visit trips for you to visit our hostels. Visit www.starfishmy.com/sponsor for more information.

Volunteer Or Intern With Us We run a volunteering program for youth and young adults who would like to do community development work amongst rural communities. If you're a school, college or university - we can design suitable programs for your organisation's objectives. We also accept interns who are able to commit a minimum of three months in East Malaysia.

Partner With Us Community development is not a solo effort. We are constantly looking for like-minded partners who share the same vision and heart for the natives in East Malaysia. If you would like to partner, support or work with us, we would love to hear from you.

“The trip to Pitas was really an eyeopening experience and a reminder on how often we take for granated the simplest things in life such as easy access to education. In the rural areas, getting to school is a challenge, that’s why hostels near the school help the students stay in school. We believe education is key to pull families and communities out of the cycle of poverty. We pray that with proper education, the children will be inspired to dream of a better future and make wise decisions in their lives. Salt x Paper thanks Starfish Malaysia Foundation for the opportunity to partner with them in investing in these students’ education and we greatly appreciate the monumental impact of this good work they’re doing!” - Salt X Paper (read here for their full testimony & photos: http://www.saltxpaper.com/changinglives-one-child-time/)


ACCOUNTABILITY

And many other individuals who gave, supported and helped spread the word. We value and appreciate all of you!

January - December 2018

Total Funds Raised in 2018

RM1,434,073.62 Total expenditure on renovation & refurbishment of hostels

RM341,728.59 Total expenditure on renovation & refurbishment of Lighthouse Kapit

RM253,375.42 250,000 200,000 150,000 100,000 50,000

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Financials

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Partners & Donors in 2018


ACCOUNTABILITY

Striving For The Best: T.A.G Framework Starfish Malaysia Foundation is committed to the highest standards of transparency, accountability and governance and with it, we have our self committed guidelines for T.A.G.

TRANSPARENCY

ACCOUNTABILITY

GOVERNANCE

We believe that transparency builds trust. Starfish ensures everything done is put down to pen and paper which includes agreements, contracts and larger-scale donor support. We believe every dollar needs to be accounted and every effort marked and evaluated on a consistent basis. Our staff and work are monitored both qualitatively and quantitatively. This is to ensure whether we’ve hit our mark or if there are any room for improvement. Our financials are externally audited under the guidelines given by the law of Malaysia.

We strive to have greater accountability in our work which means implementing the following:

Starfish has strong governance frameworks to ensure strategic and responsible use of funds, high performance, and execution discipline that balances compliance and performance.

clear line of communication for all staffs ethical fundraising activities code of ethics for our staffs financial transparency and accountability

The Foundation is guided by the Board of Directors. They provide strategy and guidance to ensure the Foundation will be a force for good to create positive and deep impacts across its focus areas. The Board is supported by an operations and field team that manages the day-to-day running of the Foundation's projects. The Foundation complies with all requirements stipulated by Companies Commission of Malaysia in carrying out its goals and objectives. All funds are used only for social or charitable purposes. All Directors are not paid salaries, directors’ fee or any form of remuneration.


ABOUT

About Starfish WHAT DO WE DO? EDUCATE - We build and manage hostels catered for primary and secondary school students to accommodate students from remote areas. Our hostels provide a safe and wholesome environment for students to excel in their studies and grow holistically. ELEVATE - We assist farmers in identifying cash crops to grow in their own villages. We provide interest-free seed funding, undertake the transport and ascertain the best market price for the produce. We also provide micro-financing for farmers with small plantations and animal farming. We value-add to base produces through intermediary food processing in the marketing chain. EMPOWER - We identify and set up business opportunities and develop business models for rural entrepreneurs. We train and build capacity within existing local businesses. We build communitybased infrastructures to support local businesses.

HOW DO WE DO IT? Our guiding philosophy and principles is T.H.I.S. Starfish Malaysia Foundation strives in bringing Transformation in a Holistic manner through an Integrated community based system to provide a Sustainable solution for a better future. We believe our work needs to be transformative. With the money, time and resources plowed into the work, our projects need to be transformative with clear quantitative and qualitative impacts. When you are in the business of making a difference, your results need to be evident. It’s lives we are dealing with. Our programs need to be holistic in nature. A person’s well being is four fold - physical, mental, social and spiritual. Growth is multi-dimensional and we want to develop a new generation that is well-rounded and versatile. An integral part of our work is the focus and value we put on the partnerships we have. We know that community development work takes a whole community to come together - therefore integrated networks and partnerships are important and must be forged and maintained. In order for our projects to live a legacy, it needs to be sustainable - financially, in the area of human resource and environmentally. Our best practices are strongly hinged on this idea that if we lay a strong foundation, at the very start, the organisation and our projects will be able to withstand the storm and the road ahead.


ABOUT

Our Team Board of Directors and Field Team

Jimmy Lei - Chairman Ho Cheng Leong - Director Kok Tuck Khow - Director Alex Yong - Management Andrew Lau - Management Lei Wee Lai - Management Terence Ooi - Program Coordinator Deborah Chan - Program Coordinator Ngwe Nam Chan - Operation Leader (Lighthouse Kapit) Tan Ai Leen - Programs Leader (Lighthouse Kapit) Frankie Dawin - Agriculturalist Hendlee - Farm Supervisor 11 hostel wardens and assistants

DEVELOPING LOCAL TALENT All our wardens, helpers and farmers are natives. They are trained, equipped and are provided continuous support for their skills and personal growth .


(1081161X)

3rd Floor, Lot 16-3, Block B, Lintas Square, Luyang, 88300 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. Tel: +6088 212 400 hello@starfishmy.com www.starfishmy.com Facebook: Starfish Malaysia Foundation

Profile for Starfish Malaysia Foundation

Starfish Stakeholder Report 2018  

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