Portfolio of Kimberly Johans

A collection of articles created during my stint as a journalist at The Macau Daily Times

Macau’s disadvantaged children to get a new school bus

Posted by Kimberly on July 23, 2007

By Kimberly Johans
Published in The Macau Daily Times
July
23, 2007, page 5 (567 words)

Macau orphanage Cradle of Hope, has received the funds to purchase a school bus to transport the children to school when they move to their new home in Taipa.
Donated by the Macau Youth Federation, the bus will ensure the children are not disadvantaged when it comes to their continuing education.
The bus will cater for between 22 and 24 children with the finer details and purchase to be finalised once Director Marjory Vendramini returning next month.
“I think it’s one of the Association’s objectives to really help the needy and it is one of our guiding principles to take on actions which are solid, which are of substance and to achieve concrete objectives,” said Mr Chan Meng Kam, President of the Youth Federation.
Cradle of Hope was chosen as the charity to sponsor for the Federation as part of the May 4 youth holiday event earlier this year.
“We will be donating a school bus because that’s what they need to send the children to school,” said Mr Chan.
“We feel that not only are we doing something truly real, we’re also trying to get more groups involved in taking a very conscientious view towards the lesser fortunate people in society,” he said.
“I think it will happen before the end of the year let’s hope.
“The funds are there so as soon as the right type of vehicle is identified we will start the purchasing of the bus,” he said.
A spokesperson from the orphanage considered the donation to be “very very good.”
“The government helps us very much but this is not enough.
“This year we have enough money but some years there is not enough depending on the age of the children,” she said.
She added that about two years ago, the orphanage were taking care of nine babies, “so we needed to use a lot of milk and diapers.
“But when we have donations we can keep the money for weather like this because the electricity sometimes is 10,000 patacas because we use it the whole day and night.
“We need to have the air-con open,” she said.
She thought that the work the Federation was doing was great.
“The children at Cradle, especially Fountain [the orphanage in Macau] need to go to school in Macau,” she said.
“We only have one van that always breaks down and another one [that only has nine seats] is not enough to take all the kids everywhere.
“Now we have five different schools in different places so it’s difficult for us,” she said.
The bus will take some time to arrive in Macau, for the simple fact that it is not manufactured here.
“I know when we choose the bus we need to wait for three or four months,” she said.
“We are going to be most frustrated in September if the bus is not here as the children will start to go to school.
She added that renting a bus would be prohibitively expensive, requiring a bus driver that the orphanages just couldn’t afford, with the casino wages far surpassing anything they could offer.
The Youth Federation also donated powdered milk for the babies, diapers and a music player among other electronic equipment.
Cradle of Hope has been open since 1994, providing ‘alternate models of care’ for disadvantaged children in Macau.
The residential home Fountain of Hope is also linked to the association.

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