The Covid-19 epidemic forced Malaysians to stay at home for two weeks at the beginning and another extended to two weeks starting 17 March 2020. University students were given options to stay in their hostels or go back to their homes. Some choose to stay in campus and others choose to leave. UTM has deployed a strict control over students who are staying in campus in its effort to control the spread of Covid-19. This presents a problem for the significant fraction of the students who depend on university campus for basic needs — food, housing, financial aid, and on-campus jobs. And, as universities shift to online learning for the remainder of the semester, not every student can afford the necessary laptops and broadband.
As restaurants and cafes were asked to close during this period, Malaysian government provides food for breakfast, lunch and dinner to help the students coping with the situation. AHIBS has taken a proactive action in giving a hand to help students staying on campus during Movement Control Order (MCO). On 26 March 2020 and 1 April 2020, AHIBS Covid-19 Welfare Taskforce including lecturers, administrators and support staff and Management of Technology students distributed 140 packs of basic food to 100 undergraduate and 40 postgraduate students staying in campus.
After the distribution, students expressed their appreciation for the effort made by AHIBS during the lock down period. Staying alone and far from family can be tough during this difficult time, therefore AHIBS has decided to support them by providing food packs in a hope of easing their burdens.
Before the lock down, Free Food Team of AHIBS gave RM150 to the needy students including B40 students and students staying in UTM during the quarantine period. The donations from AHIBS JB endowment fund were handed by Dr. Noriza Jamal, the Deputy Dean of Academic and Student Affairs (AHIBS JB) on 16th March 2020. The financial aids could help students who are affected by the lock down, due to loss of part time jobs when UTM go for full lock down.
Let’s contribute to the needy students in UTM by donating to UTM Endowment Fund and AHIBS Free Food fund.
Article written by: Dr. Nor Zafir Md Salleh, Dr. Noriza Jamal, Dr. Siti Zaleha, Dr. Dewi Fariha, Dr. Norhamimah Mastor and PM Dr. Suresh Ramakrishnan.