KUALA LUMPUR, November 19 — In a bid to bring love and care to the elderly and give back to the community, a group of former and current Miss Malaysia Tourism queens have established a welfare home for the elderly.
Called “Pink Heart Care Centre,” it is led by D’Touch International managing director and Miss Tourism International president Tan Sri Danny Ooi.
The initiative aims to provide shelter for 20 people, who are aged 65 and above and do not have next-of-kin or dependants.
According to Ooi, the idea to establish the welfare home was inspired by their ongoing charity project called “Loving Sunday,” which has been run by a group of Miss Malaysia title holders since 2014.
“Ever since the initiative kicked off, the queens would take turns to visit charitable homes, bringing cheers and joy to the less fortunate,” he added.
“However, after five years of providing this meaningful service to the underprivileged, we felt it was time to establish our own centre where the beauty queens get to spend more time with the elderly.”
Located in Ampang, the two-storey corner lot terrace house comprises six bedrooms, a large kitchen and is furnished with sofa and TV set, bed, closet, drawer for each person as well as kitchen equipment and utensils, including, fridge, oven, rice cooker and stove.
The centre is also equipped with hospital beds for those who are ill and require special care.
Ooi said the newly-renovated house will welcome six people by next month.
They are expecting to have all 20 residents in by March next year.
He also said that they followed a strict selection process and liaised with the National Council of Senior Citizens Organisations to identify and pick eligible applicants.
“The centre is solely open for the needy and underprivileged old folk with no next-of-kin or dependents, and we don’t want to encourage people to bring their elderly parents or family members here,” said Ooi.
The daily routine at the centre is geared towards keeping the residents active, robust and energetic.
To achieve a relaxed state of mind and body, there will also be meditation, tai chi and calligraphy classes.
Other services include, regular health and dental check-ups, housekeeping and laundry, medication management, interactive games and physical activities.
The estimated budget to operate the home, with 20 residents, three local stay-in caretakers and operating expenses including rental, meals, transport, utilities and miscellaneous is in the region of RM35,000 per month.
Ooi expressed his gratitude towards the kind donors who have made the initiative possible and hoped more kind-hearted people would continue their contribution to keep the centre up and running.
A total of 15 beauty queens recently toured the centre and pledged their support to bring joy and love to the elderlies when the home officially starts operations next month.
Miss Malaysia Tourism Global 2009 Weena Marcus, who is from Sabah, said she is proud of all the beauty queens for partaking on an initiative that is meaningful and worthy.
“The Pink Heart Care Centre is history in the making simply because there’s no other beauty pageant out there that have done something similar to this and I’m proud to be a part of it,” she added.
The beauties will rotate accordingly to visit the home once a week and spend time with the residents.
Miss Malaysia Tourism 2003 Carrie Lee also noted that the house was not only to provide a shelter for the elderly but also a place for them to receive love and care.
“Happiness cannot be purchased and it’s something that must come from the heart. Our goal is to come here regularly to make the residents feel happy,” she added.
Echoing similar sentiment, Miss Tourism International 2011 Aileen Gabriella Robinson said the idea behind the was to make the elderly feel safe and right at home.
She also lauded the beauty queens for their efforts to help raise funds and make the initiative possible.
Earlier this year, a total of 25 former and current Miss Malaysia beauty queens organised a charity gala dinner to raise funds for the home.
The beauties managed to raise over RM300,000 at the gala.
Miss Malaysia Tourism Pageant was initiated by Ooi in 1990 with an aim to promote tourism, culture and friendship.
Over the years, the title holders have also showed their caring side through their participation in various charity projects.
A total of 109 Miss Malaysia Tourism queens have been crowned until today.