Avatar Programme in Malaysia

Posted on September 27, 2010. Filed under: Indigenous People |

Their Story

Their lands, their forests, their home were destroyed. They are the indigenous rakyat (Orang Asal) in Middle-Baram, Sarawak. They are Malaysians.

They respect the nature, they respect the jungle; their life depends on the jungle, they live harmoniously with the jungle.

Depending on the jungle, they have long been self-sufficient. Now the jungle is encroached by the logging companies, their livelihood and the jungle are being destroyed. They are now compelled to depend on the encroachers for assistance, they are now at the mercy of external forces.

Scattered Penan settlements, devastated jungle, they are no more walking on tranquil and safe jungle trails but to use the logging roads created by the encroachers.

Walking on the logging roads, taking an occasional ride with the logging vehicles, they were subject to sexual abuse, they were raped.

Deep inside the far far land, there is no public transport to travel to the miles-away clinics and to attend classes at the few available primary schools.  Government-built pre-school programme is selective in few villages.  School drop-outs are rampant.

Pre-School Program

Objectives of this Pre-School Project

We think one of the ways to alleviate their problem is through education.

  • To provide community-based pre-school education to Penan children in Middle Baram;
  • To prepare children for entry into primary school educational system;
  • To serve as a model for other community-based, community-run and non-profit pre-school program.

Initiators of the Project

This small and humble project is a joint effort initiated by the Middle Baram Penan community and some concerned individuals including SACCESS, a Kuching-based Community Based Organisation (CBO).

Proposed Location of the Pre-schools

Together with the Middle Baram Penan communities, this project aims to set up two pre-schools Long Itam and Long Pakan in the Miri District. There are two existing community buildings in both Long Itam and in Long Pakan which can be renovated and converted into a school

Initial Projected Budget

No. Expenses (RM) Income via Donation (RM)
2 Pre-school teachers’ salary @ RM500.00 monthly for 12 months in a year for 2 years 24,000
Teachers’ medical fees @ RM250 per teacher per year 1,000
Teachers’ Training @ RM1000 per teacher per year for 2 years 4,000
Teaching Materials @ RM1500 per year per school:

text books, exercise books, pens, pencils, rulers, chalks, colour pensils etc

Recreational/Physical Education materials @ RM500 per school per year for 2 years 2,000
Annual School Sports cum Year-End Day @ RM500 per year per school 2,000
First Aid Kits & replenishment 500
Building Renovation of RM5000 per school* (one-off event for materials prepared by communities & writing board) 10,000
Transportation 2,000
Misc./contingencies (reports, communication, emergencies, coordinator’s travel etc) 3,500

a)First Year requirement:

  • RM10,000 for building renovation;
  • Half of all other cost = RM22,500
  • Sub-Total = RM32,500

b) Second Year requirement:

  • RM22,500

c) Total 2 years’ sum of RM55,000 will support 110 students for 2 years; each student at RM500 for 2 years.

Management Committee

A Management Committee comprises of headmen, teachers, Area Pre-school Coordinator,  Sarawak NGO and other volunteers will oversee the planning, setting up and operating of the schools. The Committee welcomes interested organisation/individuals to participate in the project.

What You Can Do

  • Spread words on their predicament;
  • Sign up as volunteer to assist in this project (there are plenty to be done);
  • Involved at the management;
  • Provide accommodation and care to kids from nearby Penan villages;
  • Donate a minimum sum of RM500/= which will support one student for two years.(You may also donate any amount you prefer)


  • Cheque please made payable to; KL & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (please mark at the back of the cheque: “Avatar Programme”)
  • Bank Account: Public Bank 3077 138 310
  • Please send your bankin slip to: email: info@malaysiayouth.com or  fax number: 03-22724089 marked “Avatar Programme”.
  • We operate on an “insist for receipt” policy, kindly indicate to whom the receipt is to be made to.
  • We will publish donors’ list for acknowledgement, kindly indicate name or anonymous to be listed.

For further information, please contact:


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