(from left to right: How Hwee Bee, a supporter at LASS; Snow Yap; G. Kavindran, Treasurer, LASS; Dean Dhanesh Balakrishnan; Shweta Sekhon, Miss Malaysia-Universe 2019; Priyanka Poptany, AhiHELP 2019 student volunteer; Dr Amilan Sivagurunathan as well as officers from the Royal Malaysia Police K9 Unit.
By Lim Vin Tsen
HELP University launched its 9th AniHELP event, an anti-animal cruelty awareness campaign, with the theme “A PAW IN NEED” and the main aim this year was to create awareness towards the prevention of cruelty to animals and the importance of animal adoption drives.This signature event was organised by HELP Matriculation Centre (HMC) in collaboration with Strategic Partners Hills Science Diet Malaysia, with Lost Animal Souls Shelter(LASS) as the sole beneficiary of the event.
The organizing committee of AniHELP was chaired by Joy Roberts, currently pursuing her foundation studies at HMC and other HMC student volunteers, who tirelessly worked for four months to ensure the day would run smoothly.
The event held at HMC was launched by Mr.Dhanesh Balakrishnan, Dean, Faculty of University Foundation Studies; Miss Shweta Sekhon, Miss Universe Malaysia 2019; Kavindran Ganasen, Treasurer of LASS; Snow Yap, magician performer as well as Dr Amilan Sivagurunathan, Director, Animal Medical Centre.
In his speech, Dhanesh Balakrishnan said,” The objective of AniHELP is to create awareness amongst the public on the prevention of cruelty towards animals and also, the importance of adoption drives.” He went to say that this is an excellent platform for HELP students to actually show compassion. “The world today is in a “V.U.C.A.” world that is filled with volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. “You will find that compassion is the only way we can get rid of the environment we are currently living in. And, starting with the young ones is really important. At HELP Matriculation Centre, I am extremely proud that the students have actually initiated this.”
Mr. Dhanesh also pointed out that graduates today need compassion, communication and good language skills in order to succeed today and that this event was an excellent platform for students to take the time and effort to create awareness for the prevention of the cruelty of animals.
Miss Shweta Sekhon felt that it was really important to champion the voiceless. “Events such as AniHELP unites us and teaches youth to speak on behalf of animals. I feel that it’s really important to create an awareness amongst the youth who are going to be the future leaders, who can then nurture a society that cares for animals”.
ANIHELP or Animals and HELP is an initiative by HELP Matriculation Centre students with the intent of promoting anti-cruelty towards animals, explained Mr. Murali Rajaratenam, the lecturer in charge of AniHELP said.“The idea for such an event was to also help the students build their event management skills, soft skills and also to educate them on the importance of prevention of cruelty towards animals”.
The event attracted a diverse crowd of staff, students as well as the general public whom were drawn in by the boisterous music as well as the presence of the dogs and puppies barking their attendance. Once the event was launched, the day’s activities began with a magic show by amazing magician, Snow Yap, who mesmerized the audience with his repertoire of magic tricks.
Magician Snow Yap performing on stage with Shweta Sekhon
Other highlights of the event included a demonstration from the Royal Malaysian Police K9 Unit. The trained dogs under the watchful eyes of their handlers demonstrated their detection abilities in sniffing out hidden drugs and other banned substances.
The Royal Malaysia Police K9 Unit demonstrating their detection skills.
One of the dogs from LASS waiting to be adopted.
LASS treasurer Mr. Kavindran with HMC’s ANIHELP 2019 committee members.
Kavindran explained that LASS was set up to help strays especially dogs abandoned by their owners or homeless dogs that grew up without experiencing a loving environment and the dog shelter based in Kuala Selangor provided care and shelter for over 250 rescued dogs. “We are extremely appreciative of the funds donated by caring students of HELP and the awareness created by AniHELP for our shelter,” said Mr. Kavindran.