Kuala Lumpur, 11 December - With a throw of the switch, the Christmas Charity Tree was all aglow in the Lobby of the Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur yesterday (10 December). Reto Klauser, the Hotel’s Vice-President and General Manager, had performed the lighting up of the Christmas Charity Tree 2013 in the presence of 150 disadvantaged children from Tasputra Perkim and UNHCR, the UN agency for refugees.
The voices of Christmas carollers filled the Lobby, and the children, who had earlier enjoyed themselves at a party at the Lemon Garden Café, sat rapt with attention. There was loud applause from everyone as the nine tiers of the Christmas Charity Tree, each filled with beautifully-crafted sugarpieces to depict Santa’s Toy Factory were clear in the bright lights for all to see. Atop the tree were five toy soldiers, to guard Santa’s toy bounty.
The sugarpieces, made by the hotel’s pastry artists, are for sponsorship by donors, each for a minimum donation of MYR1,000. The donors’ names or company logos will be prominently displayed against each sugarpiece.
The money donated will go to children who are in urgent need of funds for immediate surgery and medical care.
It hopes to raise MYR80,000 to MYR100,000 with this Christmas Charity Tree which is an annual charity project titled “Embrace the Gift of Life” initiated by the Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur to aid children suffering from severe heart ailments and loss of limbs. Since 1985 the hotel has helped hundreds of critically ill children and raised more than MYR3 million through this Christmas Charity Tree.
This year the Christmas Charity Tree will go to the aid of these six children:
- One-month-old Kristabelle Yogavalli Kulandai who needs a life-saving cardiac operation which costs MYR45,000.
- Five-month-old Puteri Amni Haifa Hussni who suffers from a hole in the heart and needs an operation costing MYR38,000.
- One-year-old Nur Qaisara Muinuddin who has a defective heart and needs two operations costing MYR45,000
- Five-month-old See Seng Hong who needs an operation to close the hole in his heart. It costs MYR38,000.
- One-year-old Darwisyah Saffiyah who suffers from a hole in the heart and other complications. She needs an operation that costs MYR30,000.
- Eighteen-year-old Khairul Azwan Zainal Abidin who suffers from cancer of the shin bone and needs surgery that costs MYR35,000.
The parents of Kristabelle, Nur Qaisara and See Seng Hong were with their babies at the Shangri-La Hotel Kuala Lumpur yesterday (December 10), standing beside Mr Klauser for the lighting up of the Christmas Charity Tree.
The three children have had their heart surgery and recovering well, due to the pledges of funds already made to the respective hospitals by the Shangri-La Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, even before the launching of the Christmas Charity Tree. Their operations had been urgent and life-saving.
Yap Yoke Lan, mother of See Seng Hong, said she and her husband were very grateful to the hotel for sponsoring the operation for her child. Yap, who is a factory worker, and her husband See Kim Chin, a technician, were very happy that their child is making good progress in his recovery.
Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts remains committed to operating in an economically, socially and environmentally responsible manner while balancing the interests of diverse stakeholders. In striving to be a leader in corporate citizenship and sustainable development, a corporate-level CSR Committee drives the company's initiatives in the strategic areas of stakeholder relations, environment, health and safety, supply chain and employees. Under the umbrella of sustainability, Shangri-La's social responsibility programme consists of the two elements of "embrace" and "sanctuary". Embrace focuses on Shangri-La’s Caring People Project, which aims to promote the highest level of education and health support in underprivileged communities. In sanctuary, the programme concentrates on Shangri-La's Care for Nature Project, which promotes the conservation and restoration of biodiversity. For more information, please access the CSR section on www.shangri-la.com