Orphans Giving Back to Nature
Posted on 28 October 2014

Yayasan Ilham Pinggir TTDI orphans contribute to the Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary
through the F&N Beverages Team Building Programme

LANCHANG, PAHANG – For orphaned Asian Elephants in Kuala Gandah Elephant Sanctuary, a chance to return to the wild is simply precious. Banded together in the spirit of giving, 39 orphans from Yayasan Ilham Pinggir TTDI raised a total of RM4,000 to bring these gentle giants, one step closer to freedom in a natural environment.

Thanks to a team building programme organised by F&N Beverages Marketing Sdn. Bhd, for the all-boys shelter home at the sanctuary, the lads aged between 9 to 17 years old worked in teams and undertook a range of challenges aimed at fostering team work. For each task completed, cash reward will be given, and  their “earnings” are donated  back to the elephants.

“The programme was a meaningful one not only for F&N but most certainly for the children. Similar to our team building initiatives in the past, we aim to empower the children to look beyond their limitations and realise their full potential. Although they may not have a lot, they can still make a big difference in society. That’s what we aim to instill in the children,” said Cariessa Goh, Corporate Affairs Manager, F&N Beverages.

Through the activities, the children not only learnt about the conservation efforts for endangered animals but took up the challenge to contribute to the noble cause - long term protection and preservation of the elephants.

“The children knew the importance of having a place they could call home and wanted to give the elephants the same through their donation. It was also a great opportunity for them to learn about the conservation effort for endangered animals such as the Asian Elephants and most importantly, learn about generosity and team work,” she added.
The programme began with an Elephant Trail activity which took the children trekking into the Kuala Gandah jungle. Along the trail, the children were introduced to various species of plants, some of which were favourite snacks for the elephants. The children were filled with excitement and awe as they caught a glimpse of the gentle creatures while on their trail.

Participants then went through a series of station games that demonstrated various aspects of team work and collaboration. At each station, participants earned points upon unscrambling clues to puzzles, which were later added up and translated into monetary contribution to help with the rehabilitation and relocation of the elephants. Each group proudly presented their donation to Encik Rostam Yusof, a representative of the Conservation Center at the Sanctuary. A total of RM4,000 of donation was made that day.

After their hard work, the children enjoyed a scrumptious lunch courtesy of F&N Beverages and even had time to leisurely explore the Sanctuary’s grounds.

Saving the best for last, the children had the opportunity to participate in bathing the elephants. Bathing in a river with elephants proved to be a thrilling and unforgettable experience for the children as the animals playfully dipped their trunks into the river and flicked it back to spray all those behind them. Within minutes, the children were drenched but filled with laughter.

“Although working in a team may mean dealing with differing views and characters, but by collaborating with each other, the children realised that so much more can be accomplished. We are proud of the children for their effort and hope that they a memorable time out with the elephants,” said Cariessa.

F&N Beverages has been engaging with Yayasan Ilham Pinggir TTDI since 2008 as one of the organisations to benefit from their sustainable CSR programmes. This includes the Sudut Iqra; an initiative to inculcate children with the love of reading by providing library set-ups and books to a few schools located in rural locations.

The Company also recently conducted a team building programme for 28 orphans of Rumah Kebajikan Anbu Illam and Shelter Home 3. The programme which was held at the Port Dickson Army Museum, fostered patriotism through fun and engaging activities in conjunction with the past Merdeka celebration.

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