By Noor Eszereen Juferi
Photo Omar Sabri
Pulau Carey, April 5 (UPM)
- University Health Centre (PKU), Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM), in collaboration with the Department of Educational Psychology and Counseling, Faculty of Education, University of Malaya (UM), organized a health care programme for the indigenous peoples’ communities at Kampung Sungai Bumbun, Pulau Carey, Hulu Langat, Selangor.
UPM Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Industry and Community Relations), Prof. Dr. Ir-Ing. Renuganth Varatharajoo, said the programme is the platform to identify problems faced by the indigenous peoples in order to enable the university to help uplifting the living standard among the communities.
"UPM keeps an open door to collaborate with any party to ensure the continuous development of the indigenous peoples in the country and the process of developing a special house design that is suitable to be inhabited by the indigenous peoples in Malaysia has now commenced. It is a collaborative effort between Faculty of Engineering and Faculty of Design and Architecture, UPM," he said at the launch of the community and health care programme with the indigenous peoples’ community here.
He added that UPM involvement in such activities is not only limited within Selangor, but it will also be extended to other states like Pahang, Johor, Sabah and Sarawak.
"Indigenous peoples’ community development is one of the priorities that have been accentuated along with other UPM community development programmes and we have also come out with the training and development modules for them," he said.
Head of programme, Dr. Ahmad Kamarul Juperi, said health and education are the two key elements to generate a healthy society in moving forward to being a developed country in the future.
"With the implementation of this programme, we will be able to ensure that the indigenous peoples in the villages have the access to free health and dental inspections and also to have a mini library complete with sufficient reading materials to instill reading habit among the communities," he said.
He added that the organization of such a programme is able to strengthen the relationship between higher education institutions with indigenous peoples’ communities.
A Bachelor of Science (Dietetics) student, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, UPM, Nurlyana Bukhari, said community programme such as this will continue to improve students’ expectation in gaining experience through activities with the indigenous peoples’ communities.
"In nutritional aspects, I found that they were lacking protein in their food. Protein is important as it provides copious nutrients as well as to lessen the risks of having chronic diseases," she said.
Her friend, Lu Zheng Yi, said it is her first experience in joining such a programme and hoping it will continue in the future.
"It was a good exposure as I was able to apply my knowledge in helping the communities, especially in their diet," she said.
Meanwhile, among the activities conducted at the programme were health and dental inspections, educational activities as well as establishing a mini library in the village of the indigenous peoples in Pulau Carey, Kuala Langat, Selangor. - UPM