RAUB, 25 AUGUST 2013: Two hundred Orang Asli Year 6 students around Raub completed a 2-day study camp organized by the East Coast Economic Development Council (ECERDC) at Kompleks Rakan Muda, Kampung Dong, Raub in preparation for the upcoming Ujian Penilaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) examination. Known as Sinar Cemerlang – Eng Hut Berjaya (Eng Hut is Orang Asli term for We Can Succeed), the academic camp was one of the initiatives implemented under the empower ECER Academic Training programme aimed at improving the academic performance of students around Raub through academic guidance and motivational coaching. The camp was officiated by Dong assemblyman Y.B. Dato’ Haji Shahiruddin bin Ab. Moin.

The students who attended the camp are from five primary schools around Raub, namely;

  • SK Betau, Jelai
  • SK Kuala Koyan, Jelai
  • SK Sg Dua, Bentong
  • SK Satak, Raub
  • SK Lanai, Jelai

ECERDC Chief Executive Officer Dato’ Jebasingam Issace John said the UPSR study camps would complement the existing Academic Training programme implemented under ECERDC’c empower ECER initiative which offers free tuition and motivational classes.

“All the students are Orang Asli children who will be coached and guided by experienced trainers appointed by ECERDC. We hope the empower ECER participants will achieve 100% passes rate in this year’s UPSR, showing better results”, he added.

The objectives of the programme include:

  • To better prepare the students, mentally and physically before and during UPSR
  • To motivate the students to succeed
  • To provide the students with effective learning methods and correct techniques of answering examination questions
  • To engage the students in confidence-building activities to bring out their potential

ECERDC has earlier organised similar programmes in 2012 for UPSR Orang Asli students, titled Kem Kecemerlangan UPSR Orang Asli – Dari Desa Ke Menara Gading. The programme had helped contribute towards the 100% passes rate among its participants in Pahang. In 2012, out of 930 participants of empower ECER programme who took their UPSR exam in Pahang, 239 managed to obtain 5A’s.

Empower ECER was first launched in Bentong, Pahang in 2010. In the subsequent year, the programme was extended to Lipis and Temerloh, and later in 2012, to Raub, Cameron Highlands and Kuala Pahang.

Empower ECER is also implemented in Jeli and Bachok in Kelantan, Kemaman and Dungun in Terengganu and Mersing in Johor.

empower ECER is a twin-pronged human capital development initiative launched by ECERDC to reduce economic disparities between rural and urban communities. It focuses on Skills and Entrepreneurship Training for adults and Academic Training for examination-year students in ECER.

The Academic Training targets academically weak students from disadvantaged backgrounds, enhancing their skill sets and improving their academic results so that they are not left out of the Region’s socio-economic transformation.

The Skills and Entrepreneurship Training offers courses that reflect the needs of the job market as well as that of the community. Training programmes run for a period of 10 months and they include courses such as baking, sewing & handicraft making, bridal make-up and dressing, Masakan 1Malaysia, wiring & plumbing, reception services & public relations, reflexology & traditional massage, and hairdressing. Single mothers and youths were among those who successfully completed the Skills and Entrepreneurship Training programme in 2012.

For 2013, there are a total of 4,162 Academic Training participants and 875 Skills and Entrepreneurship Training participants in Pahang.

To date, a total of 22,262 participants, comprising 13,537 students and 8,725 adults had benefitted from empower ECER. Students to date have recorded a 100% passes rate, with several scoring distinctions. For adults, it is estimated that up to 80% of participants will gain employment after completing their courses or have sufficient knowledge and practical experience to start their own business, and the ability to generate an additional income of between RM500 and RM1,500 per month, or even more.