HO GEK Chein cannot hide her excitement over her new wheelchair.
“She likes it so much,” said Simee Old Folks Home secretary Alicia Yong, interpreting the thumbs up and delighted expression from the 73-year-old.
Ho has Parkinson’s disease and has been dependent on mobility aid like a wheelchair and walking frame since 2006.
She is one of seven physically disabled residents of Simee Old Folks Home who received brand new wheelchairs from Star Foundation.
The triple-storey welfare home nestled in a peaceful part of Ipoh, Perak, currently provides care to 39 residents, including seven senior citizens who have difficulty walking.
“With the new wheelchairs, the recipients will now feel more confident in going about their daily routine,” said the home’s management board chairman Vincent Lee after receiving the benefactions from Star Foundation representative Mizan Kamalina at the home.
“These new wheelchairs are equipped with safety features such as brake and seatbelt.
“Just as important is that it is lightweight, which makes it easier for us to push it,” he said, adding that the home was a disabled- friendly premises.
Lee said some of the wheelchairs used by the home’s residents were rather heavy and the safety components were broken from years of usage.
“Before this, they were using second-hand wheelchairs donated by the public. Since they are used daily, they wear out faster.
“It is nice that they have better wheelchairs now,” he said, noting that the gift of mobility had cheered the residents up.
“We are very thankful to Star Foundation for this benevolent gesture on top of supporting us financially with donations of almost RM50,000 over two years,” Lee mentioned.
Hew Kon Yew, 79, another recipient, is equally grateful.
“I sustained a fracture on my thigh bone about 30 years ago and did not undergo any surgery because of financial constraint.
“Now, as I get older, my legs are getting weaker, so I need a wheelchair or a walking cane to help me move about,” the former contractor said while familiarising himself with the new wheelchair.
Star Foundation is the charitable arm of Star Media Group, aimed at delivering meaningful initiatives with lasting outcomes to diverse groups.
Since 2017, the foundation has donated over 230 wheelchairs.
For more information, visit starfoundation.com.my