In Malaysia a for-profit corporation can be labelled as an NGO with not-for-profit status due to an application system that is unregulated and flawed. This has lead to several problems, including the government having distrust of NGOs in general due to a lack of transparency and a misunderstanding of what NGOs can be. For once IDEAS believes that government intervention is the only way to solve this issue and has presented a solution to both sides of government in an attempt to have it implemented within the next one to three years. IDEAS has also discussed their thoughts to define and regulate the NGO not-for-profit application process with foreign ambassadors – a meeting I was fortunate enough to sit in on this week. With a dream of one day working for DFAT, it was incredible to be sitting in the same room as the Australian High Commissioner and hearing their thoughts on the matter at hand.
As if one event wasn’t enough this week, I also attended the Asia Public Policy Forum “Improving Education Access and Quality in Asia”. The facts and figures that were brought up in the discussion astounded me and it was clear as to why there was a need for such a forum. Educators, economists and policy makers from across South Asia and America attended the event, and whilst there was still a lot of focus on ‘what should the government do to fix this’, I picked up a lot of skills and information relevant to the subjects presented.
Back in the office, I find myself now in the Communications Department due to there being a greater need for intern help. With this never being an area I’ve considered entering into, it’s been a fun and interesting experience.
Over the weekend I explored Kuala Lumpur with Mannkal alumni, Wei Tien Sng. Climbing the steps of the Batu Caves was exhausting but the sights at the top definitely made it all worth the while.
The sights from the 84th story of the Petronas Towers were incredible. We were able to point out the Batu caves we had been to the day before and several other sights we had been to in between. It was a great place to take a thousand and one photos which I have since bombarded my friends and family with.
Overall it’s been a busy week, but I wouldn’t change a thing.