November 19 was an eventful day for a lot of Malaysians as an estimated number of 40,000 citizens walked through the streets of Kuala Lumpur for Bersih 5.0. Voices and energies of thousands came together to march to call for change towards a better future for our country.
But while Kuala Lumpur was bustling for Bersih 5.0, another team was also working hard to bring about a different kind of change.
For The Future
#FreeMarket is a charity event that is quickly gaining traction in Malaysia. The whole concept of the bazaar is essentially for people to bring their unwanted items that are still in good condition and to give away for free. Yes, free. The only payment desired in return for any items is just a word of gratitude.
FreeMarketUM, organised by University Malaya returned for their kids edition last Saturday. What made this bazaar different was that the items available during the event were all targeted towards the children demographic, ranging from as young as an infant to a late teenager around the age of 17.
A variety of school supplies, pre-loved clothes, and toys were available from various contributors specially for the kids that came.
Most of the children present came from low-income families or shelter homes where support may be difficult to get. Besides supplies, there were also other forms of entertainment and different types of food meant to give a fun festival ambiance for the children to enjoy.
Well-known social activist, Syed Azmi, was also present at the event with his friend Amir H. Amha to turn an idea they had last year into reality at this charity bazaar: an egg station ‘ala minute’, as they called it.
“My buddy, Amir and I wanted to open an egg station like in hotels where we will be cooking eggs ala minute upon any choice the kids wants. Scrambled, sunny side up, omelette, over easy, poached and with a variety of add-ons maybe? Eggs are after all an excellent source of protein and good for the brain,” Syed Azmi in his post when he first stated his interest in bringing this project to life back in October.
Around a month later, the duo managed to gather more people together and bring their egg station into reality for the first time ever. A total of 800 eggs were prepared for that day with condiments and other ingredients donated from various sources. They also had 4 non-stop burners made ready and croissants provided courtesy of Food Aid Foundation.
Some of the volunteers that chose to give their time for a good cause include Sharifah Sakinah from MaGIC, Umar Rasydan & Suresh Tan from ServisHero, KinLam from Teach For Malaysia and Andrew Yong & Amelia Tan from 100% Project.
Seeing the events that transpired through the day left Amir feeling proud of his fellow countrymen.
“The people that I saw at the free market and on the streets are the real change makers of Malaysia. We celebrate them in the most genuine way of giving back, not at some hotel banquet hall toasting bubblies. Here’s to all Malaysians, may our children inherit a better Malaysia,” said Amir in his status on his Facebook profile.
Feature Image Credit: Syed Azmi Facebook