ILMU HASANAH: LINKING HOUSEHOLD INCOME, HEALTH AND
SHAHIRA AHMED BAZARI
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF YAYASAN HASANAH
8 DECEMBER 2020 (TUESDAY)
10.00AM – 11.30AM (5 MIN SPEECH @ 10AM)
Join Zoom Meeting Link: https://yayasanhasanah-org.zoom.us/w/89448164702?tk=yiWWNf-JUG1-EmXCDQf7dlF4Wc_WLYB4nwqA9bDxGoM.DQIAAAAU04atXhZzMUhJaFk2OFQ3U3VCdDFwb1dMSUtBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA&pwd=Y2N1TXFSL2l5UzErTlBBZnJ2d28yUT09
Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh and a very good morning to all of you.
YBhg Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop, Chairman of Khazanah Research Institute,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION TO ILMU HASANAH
- Thank you for taking the time to join us for our last ILMU Hasanah session for the year 2020, on Khazanah Research Institute’s recently published report “The State of Households”.
- The report provides a long-term assessment of household well-being in 3 parts:
- ‘Welfare in Malaysia Across Three Decades’ which looks at household income, expenditure, poverty and inequality;
- ‘Work in an Evolving Malaysia’ which explores the evolution of the country’s economic structure, and the different realities of work and sources of income for households; and
- ‘Social Inequalities and Health in Malaysia’ which considers the state of households through the lens of health and looks at the relationship between health, work, income and other social factors.
- We are fortunate to have the authors for all three parts with us today – congratulations to all of you for putting this impressive research together.
- Ladies & Gentlemen, Yayasan Hasanah is a grant-giving foundation of Khazanah Nasional Berhad, supporting Civil Society Organisations implement their programmes in the areas of Education, Community Development, Environment, as well as Arts and Public Spaces.
- Through our Knowledge impact area, we support research work by Khazanah Research Institute, who looks at the nation’s most pressing issues – and gathers data and information which helps our policymakers develop sound policies and plans that are grounded in evidence.
- Knowledge is intrinsically linked to learning wouldn’t you agree with me ladies & gentlemen?
- Therefore, for Hasanah, the source of our knowledge is also the work that our partners do on the ground. These learnings then provide us with evidence to support, advocate, and influence policy and structural changes in line with our aim to be an impact-based foundation supporting long-term social change.
- To further expand our work in Knowledge, recently, we opened up the call for Research Grants in our 2021 Grant Cycle, in addition to our yearly call for grants for projects under the other areas of Education, Community Development, Environment and the Arts.
- If you are interested, the last date to submit applications is 4 January 2021. Please visit our website for more details on our 2021 Grant Cycle or reach out to the MLE & Knowledge team if you have questions.
- Ladies & Gentlemen, our ILMU Hasanah sessions such as the one you are attending today, are knowledge sharing events that we host for our Civil Society Organisation Partners and stakeholders. With Covid-19 changing the way we live and work, we are now able to broadcast our sessions to a wider audience, which includes the public.
- These ILMU Hasanah sessions, as well as the capacity building sessions we offer our CSO partners, are aimed to enable and support learning for our partners, the wider stakeholder community, as well as for ourselves in Hasanah.
- I am also excited to share that we are planning to hold our inaugural forum, The Hasanah Forum 2021, which is slotted for next year. More information will be made available on our website and social media platforms. Stay tuned.
- Ladies & Gentlemen, many of us have been staying home since March when the MCO was first announced. While CMCO has been lifted for some states, those of us in Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Sabah, and a few other districts across the nation, are still obeying the extended CMCO until the end of December.
- I hope that you are doing your best to stay home, observing SOPs to stay safe, and are taking care of both your mental and physical health.
- Staying home has been a blessing and a privilege for some, but everyone’s version of staying home, and working from home, is very different.
- I wanted to take this opportunity to remind viewers that there are avenues you can seek help and a listening ear, should you need it. My team are plugging those websites and helpline numbers into the chat room as I speak so do save those links if needed. Some of these helplines are fully or partially supported by Hasanah through our grants – the “Kawan Bah” helpline by Good Shepherds Services is one that is fully supported by Hasanah, and is set up in response to the higher numbers of domestic violence that we are seeing since the start of MCO.
HASANAH GRANTS, SPECIAL GRANTS AND HUMAN DISASTER RELIEF FUND
- Ladies & Gentlemen, as you are aware, this pandemic has affected many Malaysians, especially those from the lower-income groups.
- Recently, in response to Covid-19, through our partnership with the Ministry of Finance, we were able to offer the Hasanah Special Grants (HSG), to support social programmes for the B40 communities – including vulnerable communities, e.g. refugees, orang asal, ageing community, homeless community, at-risk children, women and youth; and persons with disabilities or people with special needs from Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak.
- To date, through the HSG, we have or are supporting 110 projects – ranging from livelihood projects, health-related projects, projects on mental health, to food aid and cash aid, amounting to RM17,551,476.70.
- The State of Households Report finds that women’s participation in the labour force has seen a rise over the last few decades, especially in the states of Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor – kudos to our women!
- A supportive environment for women such as flexible work arrangements and child care support would have contributed to this increase, as well as other means of support from the civil sector such as providing the opportunity for marginalised women to be empowered by upskilling or providing them with the necessary skills to be entrepreneurs.
- Through the Hasanah Special Grants, we support almost 50 livelihood projects which empower the marginalised community including women – amounting to funding of almost RM7.7 million.
- While, through our Hasanah grants, we supported or are currently supporting 10 longer-term livelihood projects, with a funding amount of RM3,739,088.
- What would be a welcome addition to the report in tracking data in the next decade could be on the employment share in the environmental and arts space, for example, the livelihood opportunities in preserving and conserving the environment.
- I note from The State of Households report that poor health outcomes tend to be more prevalent in lower income groups, and that the increase in the prevalence of selected diseases was largest for the bottom quintile of the population. This was reaffirmed in some way through the number of applications we received to assist the B40 community suffering from illnesses and health issues, and who had difficulty accessing medical services, which was made even more difficult due to the loss of income many faced due to Covid-19.
- Eventhough, Hasanah does not support health-related projects under our normal grants, I am extremely glad that we were able to extend some support to the B40 communities in this regard, under the Hasanah Special Grants.
- It is heartening to read that the State of Households Report summarises that Malaysia’s progress over the past three decades has been a positive one.
- Although there have been many improvements in economic distribution policies and social welfare, a lot remains to be done, as we at Hasanah look forward to continuing our work in providing the right support to marginalised layers of the community.
- As Nelson Mandela aptly said, “As long as poverty, injustice and gross inequality persist in our world, none of us can truly rest”.
- We hope that this webinar session will give you some insight into the findings of report and encourage you to take the time to pursue the report which is available on KRI’s website.
- I wish you all a fruitful and engaging discussion.