Saturday, 18 May 2013

St. Patrick's Society Charity Night 2013



Last week, I attended an event that gave me an up-close experience of how many good people are out there. It was a totally enlightening night, a gleam of light amidst this world full of tragedy and heart-breaking news. 

St. Patrick's Society of Selangor is a non-profit organization, promoting the social life and community of Irish people and people with Irish connections in Malaysia. They have social and cultural events while strongly involved in organizing charity events to raise funds for orphanages and other groups.  

St. Patrick organized a charity night last 11th of May held at the Irish ambassador's residence in Jalan Ampang Hilir. Interesting items for the silent auction were displayed by the foyer, together with auction sheets where guests can easily write their names and bid price. Some of the items for silent auction were these amazing paintings:





All of the items for sale at the event were donated by members, local businesses and other groups who share the same vision with St. Patrick's Society. So this means all the proceeds will go to the charity funds and will be awarded to the beneficiary group of this event. It's really amazing. And look at these paintings! Kudos to the artist of these really unique images. These surely took a considerable amount of time to create and the style is simply beautiful. 

Before the program started, guests arrived and registered with the reception team. For the benefit of this charity event, all guests have to buy their tickets for drinks which include soft drinks, beer, wine and other liquor. Food was ready to be served, which, as I learned, was also fully sponsored by one of the society's members. And mind you, the food looked really great, served by a caterer. I managed to try some of the dishes later that night and they really had good stuff. 



Each table was prepared with wine glasses, a free bottle of wine and event information sheets. 

On another table was an artist who worked on a seriously impressive piece of artwork. The artist, Melanie Bayoud, started from a blank sheet of paper and her finished artwork of a Celtic harp drawing was auctioned on the night itself as well. 




Soft drinks, beer, wine and other liquors were also sponsored. Tables serving the drinks were waiting next to the food banquet. One of the sponsors was Wine Talk who provided wines through wine tickets purchased at the reception and another box of wine for live auction. Here was Wine Talk's sommelier, David Stephan, with St. Patrick's Society members, Tony and Cherry Beadsworth:




The program started with introduction from the organizers and a brief discussion about the beneficiary of the charity event, the Chin Student Organization (CSO). 

Education is important to everyone. Unfortunately, not all are fortunate enough to be given  the right to education. The CSO is a voluntary organization created to meet the needs of Chin refugee children. It was formed in March 2005 by a small group of Chin university students who came to Malaysia in search of a secured and safer life away from the turmoil of Myanmar. They aim to provide education to the Chin refugee children who are not eligible for formal education in Malaysia.

All the teachers are working as volunteers to teach these children. But aside from education, the organization also needs to provide meals, school items and other basics, especially uniform. Some people might think that uniform is a small thing and shouldn't be a priority but for refugees, having a uniform is important as this gives an instant recognition that they belong to a school or a group. This will protect them from being taken away, mistakenly captured or other worse possibilities. In a world where children are helpless, safety measures save lives. 

Food is definitely a priority as well. Children need to have their basic meals provided, including milk. My son is highly dependent on milk for nutrition and I know how important milk is to growing children. It's a challenge at the moment for CSO as they don't have sufficient funds to provide milk daily. 

Some of the children from CSO were at the event and gave a short presentation. Each student shared a short experience and what they hope for in the future. This was a highlight of the event and gave everyone a heart-warming moment, hearing each child's thought and hope in their lives. 




The evening continued with dinner for everyone and the live auction where the society members gave more donations to the charity. 


I was really surprised that a charity event could be so lively and fun. Everybody seemed to be having a good time. But on top of it all, I am amazed at how generous these people are. The members of St. Patrick's Society are such a blessing to these refugee children. Couldn't there be more of them in this world? The event raised more than RM150K plus 100 uniforms and a new sewing machine for crafts! This will make a valuable difference to these children and their lives.
As a mother who works her way through life to provide a good future for her child, I cannot imagine my son not having a chance to good education or even milk everyday. To Chin Student Organization, to St. Patrick's Society of Selangor, to the Irish Embassy and to all who supported this event, may you all succeed in making this world a better place to live in for more children. You make miracles for each child and for their loved ones. 

To know more about CSO, check out their site:

To know more about St. Patrick's Society, check out their site: