Yayasan Hasanah focusing on pandemic-related projects

by ASILA JALIL / pic credit: yayasanhasanah.org

YAYASAN Hasanah’s total expenditure last year stood at RM123.05 million where 80% of the projects coordinated by the foundation last year were pandemic-related.

In its report titled “A New World of Silver Linings and Embracing Change”, it showed a significant portion of the expenditure totalled to RM96.03 million was allocated towards the Hasanah Grant.

The foundation aims to help those in need by enhancing education aspects and pushing for community development and environmental conservation amid the pandemic.

Yayasan Hasanah MD Shahira Ahmed Bazari (picture) said the need for immediate relief became important last year as the world grappled with Covid-19.

“Reaching out to those adversely affected with various forms of aid, and in a timely manner formed the crux of our operations.

“We responded with livelihood initiatives to help many micro entrepreneurs to pivot to online sales, education initiatives to support teachers, students and parents through hybrid teaching and learning,” she said in a statement recently.

Other initiatives included financial assistance and health services including hygiene kits, food and nutrition for the urban and rural poor, people with special needs and Orang Asli, among others.

She added that for the first time, Yayasan Hasanah extended a small amount of unrestricted funding to 39 grant partners to assist them in coping with the pressure brought on by the pandemic.

Yayasan Hasanah expanded its network to include 253 partner organisations and mobilised more than five times the projects it delivered in 2019.

The foundation also doubled its outreach to more than 322,000 Malaysians in the past year via various humanitarian and relief initiatives.

Under the Hasanah Grant, initiatives for education purposes stood at RM76.8 million which included the Bestari Grant where 93 secondary school students in the bottom 40% category were provided a study grant to assist with living expenses.

The foundation also awarded 62 scholarships to students from lower to middle income backgrounds and 64 scholarships were awarded to students with outstanding academic achievement.

Yayasan Hasanah had reached out to 1,315 beneficiaries last year through various capacity building and livelihood generation programmes.

A total of RM30.07 million was allocated last year for Covid-19 response purposes with 215 projects being held to assist 201,800 individuals impacted by the pandemic.

Moving forward, the group wants to continue providing pandemic-related initiatives to help those that are still adversely affected.

Among its key focuses is the Cerdik initiative which is a programme that loans laptops for students in need.

The report added that another RM25 million grant has been set aside by the Finance Ministry for the Hasanah Special Grant II which will be launched next month.

The grant is focused on creating real and lasting socio-economic changes in the country through solutions that empower communities, encouraging social inclusivity and improving the environment.

“One of the positive outcomes of this pandemic is the acceleration of collaboration, and the building of social capital and trust among like-minded stakeholders and partners.

“Last year proved that together, we are all indeed stronger and more impactful.

“We want to continue paving the way, with our expanded network of partners, for long-term impact,” added Shahira.