Mersing, 28th March 2014 – Within a year of the launch of empower ECER Mersing, the programme welcomed its first entrepreneur, Mohd Khairee bin Attandol, proud owner of bridal and beauty boutique, Butik D’Chinta. The boutique, opened for business in December 2013, was officially launched today by the State Assemblyman for Tenggaroh, YB Raven Kumar a/l Krishnasamy.
The venture is the beginning of a brand new future for 30-year old Khairee, an odd job worker with no stable income previously. The empower ECER graduate is now running his own business, with three staffs, all participants of empower ECER’s Skills & Entrepreneurial Program.
empower ECER is a twin-pronged human capital development initiative launched by the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC) in 2010 to help reduce economic disparities between rural and urban communities. It consists of the Academic Skills Program that conducts remedial classes for low achieving students from disadvantaged homes, sitting for their UPSR, PMR and SPM examinations. For adults, there is the Skills & Entrepreneurial Training program that offers vocational courses to single mothers, jobless youths and women from low income households.
The Skills & Entrepreneurial Training program offers courses that are in demand in the local community, and having bright prospects as small scale businesses. Courses offered include cooking, 1Malaysia cookery, baking, sewing & design, cell-phone repair, plumbing, ICT, front desk service, plumbing and wiring courses.
The Skills & Entrepreneurial Training program offers courses that are in demand in the local community, and having bright prospects as small scale businesses. Course offered include cooking, 1Malaysia cookery, baking, sewing & design, cell-phone repair, plumbing, ICT, front desk service, plumbing and wiring courses.
In his statement, the Chief Executive Officer of ECERDC, Dato’ Jebasingam Issace John said, “It is heartening to encounter youths such as Khairee Attandol, who is quick to convert his newly acquired knowledge and self-confidence to start promising businesses.
“We are also gratified by the multiplier impact of training Khairee because it has created one new entrepreneur and also three new jobs in ECER. It is a fine example of transformation at work in the region.”
Butik D’Chinta was set up few months after Khairee completed the make-up and bridal course conducted by empower ECER. His boutique rents bridal items, from the wedding dais (pelamin) to bridal outfits and decorations. It also offers bridal make-up services. It has been a promising start for Butik D’Chinta that has enjoyed good customer feedback since it opened for business last December.
Khairee belongs to the first batch of empower ECER Mersing. The Skill & Entrepreneurial Training program is conducted by certified trainers, with courses running over a period of ten months. For the conveniences of participants, of whom many are home-makers or people seeking to break free from low paid jobs, the courses are conducted on weekends, with each session lasting three to four hours. In addition to coursework, trainers conduct motivational sessions so that participants become confident of their skills and abilities.
To date, 80% of empower ECER participants in ECER have started their own businesses upon completion of their course, earning an extra RM500 month. Top performers are reported to earn an average of RM10,000 to RM20,000 a month.
empower ECER was first launched in Bentong, Pahang in April 2010, and involved the participation of 400 students and 600 adults. The overwhelming success of the pilot program led to its rapid implementation across rural ECER. Designed as an inclusive human capital development program, empower ECER today reaches out to different communities in 17 locations; nine in Pahang, namely Bentong, Temerloh, Raub, Lipis, Cameron Highlands, Jerantut, Maran, Rompin and Kuala Pahang; three Kelantan, namely, Jeli, Bachok and Ketereh; four in Terengganu, namely, Kemaman, Dungun, Hulu Terengganu and Besut; and in the district of Mersing, Johor. Since 2010, the program has benefitted 34,113 participants, comprising 11,175 adults and 22,398 students.