Have Hope

Guided by personal ethics of ‘do more good’, Yuet Mee Ho-Nambiar has a long involvement with sustainability and community building activities. Belief in the oneness of humanity and the nobility of man underpins her interest in matters relating to unity and social cohesion of communities, while her background in a finance-related profession focuses her interest to the area of inclusive economics and development.  

The Good Old Sporting Spirit

By Yuet Mee Ho-Nambiar

The Olympic Games – which is currently consuming a lot of our screen time – showcases the sporting prowess of the marvellous diversity of sportswomen and sportsmen. Few occasions can claim to embrace so wide a cross-section of humanity, comprising participants of varied ethnic, religious, and cultural backgrounds.

Badminton players Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik were congratulated by Ambassador of Japan Oka Hiroshi when they won the Bronze Medal for Malaysia at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Photo courtesy of Embassy of Japan in Malaysia Facebook.

In summoning together the nations in friendship to Tokyo – albeit a year later than scheduled – under Covid conditions, powerfully suggests that collaboration and common endeavour are possible in all things. Truly, nothing is more striking about this extraordinary spectacle than its capacity to reflect humanity’s collective will and resilience to overcome and to prevail. Indeed, humanity today is bound together in a global civilization, fragmented only by man-made boundaries.

Malaysians passionately rallied behind our own whenever they played during the Games. The youth strived with determination, and they fought back ferociously, but it was not to be. They apologised humbly to the nation – and we wept together. Malaysians were moved.

But are we taking lessons from the many examples of teamwork, fair play, valour, and earnest striving demonstrated by our youth? These same qualities are equally evident – while not as widely showcased – in our youth driving the many social enterprises and not-for-profit organisations which are thriving across our country.

Ever since Covid started, when restrictions on personal interactions waxed and waned, and economic activities declined significantly, we see the extraordinary rise in capacity in Malaysians to give expression to our empathetic desire to care for each other.

Many brought their creativity and sense of purpose to bear, and resources are channelled to communities in need – whether labouring to provide meal aids or championing the equality for undocumented communities. This is because Malaysians have expansive hearts, unbounded creative energy, great resilience, a passion for progress, a strength forged from diversity, and minds enlightened by the spirit of the age and inspired by the quest for justice.

The country is still reeling from the health pandemic. And sadly, we are still witnessing habits of contest, self-interest, prejudice, and closed-mindedness which continue to hinder the progress of our nation towards our collective prosperity. And regretfully, not yet the collective will to collaborate and to put aside their differences in the interests of our common good.

However, we remain hopeful. Because there are growing numbers among us who are showing in words and deeds how they yearn to purposefully contribute their share to the betterment of our society while pursuing their aspirations through rich patterns of interaction with each other of bonds of trust and fellowship, of camaraderie and collaboration.
So let us focus on the many qualities that Malaysians so admirably embody, and on the back of our vibrant, interwoven strengths of all Malaysians, envision our dazzling future possibilities shaped by collaboration, and mutual support for our lasting prosperity.

Let our Imagination begin!

The views expressed here are that of the writer’s and not necessarily that of Weekly Echo’s.

Editor’s note: Please check out the Have Hope Exchange at https://havehope2.blogspot.com/ The site provides information on essential needs and services during this period of need.