Life would be meaningless without doing some good. We can be busy in our work or career, but concurrently, we should be involved in some social work or charitable activities where and when we can.
It is all a matter of contributing what we can – financially or time-wise.
Over the years, I found great joy in helping the orphans, the underprivileged and those who didn’t have access to basic educational needs.
Through the Salvation Army, I found an avenue to reach out to the orphans and underprivileged kids.
I remember Chong Siat Fah, a child whose education I sponsored and who I helped find a job until she got happily married.
Then there was Brenda Wong who also received a scholarship to study business management and the last I heard, she was working in the insurance field.
I also remember Hiew Yen Ling from the Salvation Army Home. I provided employment for both her and her then boyfriend (now her husband).
Through charitable bodies and other contacts, I have “adopted” or sponsored probably around 50 orphans and underprivileged kids and saw them through their education and assisted them in getting jobs.
Some of them have visited me – others keep me posted through emails and post cards. I feel great satisfaction when they tell me how they have found new and better jobs or tied the knot!
For many years, I have sponsored the Speech Day of my alma mater – Sacred Heart Secondary School, where dozens of top performers would be given generous cash awards.
In my days, if we came out tops in our exams, we would be given an exercise book as a prize. For this year’s top achievers, I would also be giving away two Myvi saloon cars, among other prizes.
Recently, I funded the construction of a new theatre at the school, and it has kindly agreed to name it after my late father, Hii Heng Chiong.
Another social work I have been involved in is the provision of free tuition to rural kids. I give yearly contributions to the La Salle Foundation in Kuching, headed by my previous secondary school headmaster Brother Albinus. Through its tuition centres, it has reached out to rural students and provided them extra coaching in a variety of subjects.
I am working on duplicating that concept in Peninsular Malaysia on a wider scale, as a personal project.
SEGi as an educational institution has over the years provided ten of millions of ringgit worth of scholarships and grants to needy students to fund their higher studies. This is part of its corporate social responsibility.
Now, to centralise and rationalise my own private social initiatives, I have set up a charitable organisation, Hiichiikok Foundation.
I am providing an initial funding of RM10 million for the foundation and it would be spearheading a few new charitable and social programmes soon.
We are in the process of getting together a professional and full-time team to run the foundation.
The foundation’s emphasis would be to help orphans, single mothers and the rural poor.
Believe me, there is definitely joy in giving.
Life, love and everything in between is all about sharing a part of whatever you have.