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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Taking Back the Responsibilities in a Community

Mengikut cara Muhammed Yunus

Siapa kenal Muhammed Yunus. Pemenang nobel tahun lepas when he introduced micro banking in Indian. The Grameen bank is responsible for pulling families out of extreme poverty while giving them a way to stop the economic rut

While reading his noble effort an idea blossomed in my stupid head on doing something like that in Malaysia. The only difference is I’m trying to push the idea of loans for education of sort

So hear me out and tell me if this is a maverick idea or just another mindless dribble that spewed out of my weak brain. How many times have we heard people complaining that they can’t afford to buy the uniform and books for their child? They can’t pay the fees ( well fees dah abolish now.. so I’m just using this as an example) resulting in their children having to stop going to school and help their parents. 13 years from the projected developed country status we are still having this problem. I think my dad went through the same problem after his SPM ( I dunno what it’s called back then.. LCE? O Level? .. ntah. I plead ignorance).you see my dad had to stop pursuing his education because my gramps couldn’t afford it. so as the story goes he went to look for a job as a clerk. one day his boss saw his resume and exam result and saw that my dad is too good to rod as a clerk. After much prodding my dad told him the story and a few months later he manages to get a scholarship and he is now a successful senior manager in Petronas. Was it luck that my dad happen to find someone who saw potential in him. Could the same thing happen in today’s “ you got to be connected to so and so to get so and so” world? I want to say yes but as a realist I would have to say no. I’ve seen students whose dad can afford to go to Europe once a month getting scholarship. Isn’t scholarship meant for the poor. I know you can say that the fella probably a smart son of a bitch but in my experience most of them are no better than the other kids in school only he is richer.

He probably speaks better English during the interview. Note to interviewers.. good command of English is not a good yardstick to measure the brain capacity. A friend of mind in England is hopeless in English but he is one of the cleverest bastards I’ve met. I helped him out with the translations and he helped me out with the maths. Hey I will admit that I am the stupid shit head who happens to be blagged his way to a scholarship with his fake accents! Yes. Guilty as charge there brothers and sisters. I blagged my way in like any good school debater would do. Using big words and my confidence to make me look cleverer than I really am. Am I proud about this? FUCK YEAH. I won’t say I’m sorry about it. my dad can’t afford to send me to college using his own pocket money back then. So I had to use some Jedi mind trick and charm to get what I wanted most. Sorry pal! I hope I can say I totally deserve the scholarship but its all down to my charm. Not my brain!

So back to the Idea I was having. So I felt bad about the whole blagging for a scholarship thing so what I’m about to propose will make me a tad better about it. you have seen how micro banking works in India. I don’t think the poverty level here in Bolehland is as bad as India. what we have is parents having to make the hard decision to pull their children off schools. So what not make a micro bank just for education? Sort of a mini PTPTN minus the exorbitant usury. You give the needy micro loan somewhere around 500-700 so that they can pay for the uniforms shoes and books. Just like Grameen bank just charge them a few ringgit for processing fees. Let’s say 10 ringgit per thousand ringgit loaned to them.

Now is that a good idea or just plain dumb? But wait I have more dumb ideas

You heard of world vision right. the Eurocentric feel good NGO who let rich whiteys sponsor poor dying blackie so they feel better about themselves. It’s the in thing. You can say it’s the lite version of buying African babies made famous by Madonna and Jolie. How about we create a socialised education fund. Anyone interested will pledge a few hundred ringgit to a student they chose to sponsor. In a way the community is supporting itself. I think these days we delegate everything to the government. We moaned and curse when we our self aren’t doing anything to fix the situation. For fuck sake let’s just stop dreaming that the government will change anytime soon. Let’s change our self first. That’s why the German’s did after the war. They know the country is beaten. But they didn’t wait to be helped unlike what the French did. The French didn’t even try to rebuild their nation when VE day was announced. They wait for help to come before rebuilding. The defeated German refuse to wait and just do it within their own small communities throughout the land.

Yeah me and my Utopia. Then again a few years ago I use to think cleaning my own table at McD was a dumb idea. These days I see more and more people doing it ( prolly the overseas student doing it out of habit). I touched upon this thing before. Stop waiting and hope people will do their job. Tackle the problem by the scruff of the neck and do it ourselves

I’m not saying the government should stop giving out scholarship. All I’m saying is in cases where the worthy people didn’t get it we should all chip in to help. We all know students are getting cleverer ( in regurgitating facts and remembering dates like robots but didn’t know the significance of it! – my sister thinks sejarah is all about hafalan not learning what we can learn from them). So the chance of a student to get a scholarship shrinks every single year

Alright I better shut my pie hole again. Let’s hear what you think. And just give it to me

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