as told by BURBURA GOH, SK Tumunda Salimandut volunteer
Despite staying up late to practise our ‘Cup Song’, most of us woke up rather easily this morning. Somehow wanted to spend as much time as possible with the kids, before leaving this lovely place 24 hours later T.T
After breakfast, we practised the song “You Raised Me Up” for the last time, in preparation for our performance this evening. Most of the kids here are really good at singing, some can even harmonize! (Clear evidence shown during those Karaoke sessions over the weekends!)
At 7.20a.m, we went to the makmal for our last Math and English lessons. Being a teacher for 2 weeks made me realize that hard work, immense passion and patience are required while teaching kids. However, I truly enjoyed teaching the kids, especially when they were so eager to learn and it was really satisfying whenever the kids understood and remembered what I have just taught them.
During recess, we had snacks (mee goreng, mee sup, air bandung, kacang…) with the kids in the canteen. Once we arrived, Enielson and Aiman quickly brought over chairs for us to sit, I felt really touched by their little actions! I enjoyed this moment a lot, not only because it brought back my childhood memories, also it created more bonding time for myself with the kids! These kids really liked to add soy sauce and chili sauce into their mee sup, despite frequent advice from Wen Ping not to add too much!
While others went to teach non-P6 kids, Li-Ann, Kar Yan and I were assigned to give presents to the P1 and P2 kids. The kids were overjoyed to see the bubbles, colour pencils, tooth kits and Apollo biscuits! Some couldn’t wait till after class and started eating the Apollo biscuits. I knew we have gotten the kids the right gifts, when I heard a teacher saying “Jangan biar saya nampak sesiapa ambil pensel warna kawan lain lagi ya!” Before we left, we also demonstrated to the kids the right way to brush their teeth.
At 4pm, the joint Hari Raya celebration and Farewell Party officially started at the hall. The ceremony started with speeches from representative from Ministry of Education, the headmaster, representative of PIBG and last but not least, our director, Jacklyn and project leader Li-Ann! In their speeches, the headmaster and representative of PIBG kept apologizing for not able to provide better care. I felt really bad hearing that because we had actually received loads of care from both the teachers and parents, especially the food! Till now, I still miss the nasi lemak and rendang chicken very much! Special thanks to Cikgu Katriona, Cikgu Aishah and Abang Sean, who have spent lots of time cooking and helping us out to make the whole project runs smoothly! Konsiko! (Thank you)
After the speech, it’s finally time for the kids and volunteers to perform the song ‘You Raise Me Up’. Right after that, we volunteers also performed ‘The Cup Song’ (*Special thanks to Derek who patiently taught us and planned the whole performance). It was a really touching moment and I was very proud of the kids and ourselves!
Finally…it was time to eat! A wide varieties of food were served in buffet-style. All the kuih-muih, soto ayam, rendang ayam, asam laksa…were very appealing and tasty! At the same time, there was a karaoke session where parents and teachers sang their heart out. We learnt and joined the kids and teachers for Sumazau, a Dusun’s traditional dance.
I took this opportunity to take photos with my non-P6 kids! For most of the evenings, we played games, folded paper stars and chit chat with each other. Thanks to these ‘sahabat bintang’, I was able to burn off calories from the food that I have eaten over the past 2 weeks!
Around 8p.m, we (P6 and volunteers) went back to our hostel, to have our own farewell ceremony. Another project leader, Kamraj gave an inspiring speech. Thereafter, slideshows were played, displaying all the activities we had over these 12 days (Special thanks to Vinrea who stayed up the whole night to prepare this!). We sang ‘Kenangan Terindah’ for the kids, as a token of appreciation, for giving us the sweetest memories we could ever asked for. Soon, the hostel was flooded with tears.
Before supper-time, we gave the kids gifts that we have prepared and took photos with them. Looking back now, I really wish I have taken more photos with them!
It was indeed a joyful, yet sorrowful day. I am really glad being able to experience a true Dusun style celebration and meeting some kids’ parents. However, it’s really struck me that how fast time passes and we were leaving the next day. This does not only signifies a farewell between us and the kids, also a goodbye between us volunteers.