‘Crowd Funding’ Helps Community Projects

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‘Crowd funding’ helps community projects

KUCHING (30 October 2015): Most of us have heard of ‘crowd funding’ as a way to source for money to fund a cause, project or product.

Names like ‘Kickstarter’ or ‘Indiegogo’ are well known although the focus is usually outside Malaysia and you need a lot of ringgit make it to the lowest pledge.

Borrowing the concept from another non-local outfit called ‘Detroit Soup’, a local community of youths called ‘The Champions’ started their own version called ‘Sup4good’, an event that played out at The Granary recently.

Like its inspiration, Sup4good invites proposals from members of the public who have a great idea, initiative or project that can help the community.

Four finalists are shortlisted and given four minutes to pitch the idea to a group of people who paid RM10 for a bowl of soup and a vote. They also have to answer four questions from the audience. There were three presenters for the first Sup4good as the fourth had to drop out due to an emergency.

Patricia Wong from Unimas talked about ‘H2O’, a mobile app she and a team are developing. According to Wong, H2O stands for ‘Hearts to Offer’.

She explained that the app made it easy to match potential volunteers to organisations that need them.

“For potential volunteers, there is sometimes a lack of information that that will make it difficult to find a volunteering opportunity. For organisations, they may not have the resources to manage sites and bring in a consistant flow of volunteers,” she explained.

Tan Pei Chin, also from Unimas, pitched an idea of collecting food waste to be used for breeding worms that would be fed to chickens.

“All the food that goes to waste will add to greenhouse emission. Using food waste to breed worms that will be fed to chickens will reduce the need for commercial chicken feed,” she said.

Yong Li Na’s concern lie in youths outside Kuching who have the potential to do more with their lives, but may not have the connections.

“Finding your first job is always the hardest and in the case of these SPM or STPM leavers, they are from low income families. Sometimes a parent has passed away, leaving them to be breadwinners. We will help them find their first job.”

Yong and her team will kick off a programme in Bau in December, which involved interviewing students, training and job placement followed by six months of mentoring.

“By the time they enter the programme, they will already have jobs waiting for them,” she said, adding that she is approaching potential employers.

While audience members deliberated over which cause to support, all three presenters were allowed to mingle and talk about their cause.

In the end, the sore memories of first jobs must have struck a chord because Yong was announced winner of the first Sup4good event. She took back RM1,050 raised that night and will put it into her project.

The next Sup4good is scheduled for February next year when Yong will report her progress, and another four presenters will get to pitch their ideas. The inaugural Sup4good was held at The Granary Kitchen + Bar. The soup was sponsored by UCSI.

The primary sponsor for Sup4good is Yayasan Perpaduan Sarawak (YPS). Collaborative and promotional partners include iCube Innovation, and Malaysian Global Innovation and Creativity Centre (MaGIC).

Also present were YPS general manager Datu Aloysious Dris and member of the secretariat Rosalind Wong. For updates on Sup4good and to be informed of future events, visit their Facebook page at fb.com/Sup4good.

[Source: “‘Crowdfunding’ helps community projects” published by Borneo Post Online]

Photo Credits: Borneo Post Online

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