Thursday, January 31, 2008


Saya telan air liur bila tengok buku ini harganya ialah RM269.50 (56 Euro).

Tak mampu!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

anything is possible

Anything is Possible - Proverb
Anything is Possible - Proverb

As of today, based on the pledges and donations I have received, we have achieve RM10,110.00!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Latest Updates on Library Project

Thousand apologies for not updating on the library project for the past few days. I was away in Kota Kinabalu. Only yesterday I reached home and straight away looking for naan and tandoori in Ampang.

I still receive funds via Today, the collection has reached RM9210.00. After discussing with En Yahya Yusof of Rumah Nur Zaharah we have decided to hand over the remaining portion of the allocation for Rumah Nur Zaharah this Saturday, so that he and the 'cikgu' can go and buy the STPM/SPM/PMR/UPSR reference books for the orphans.

I went to Popular last week to look for the reference books but I gave up after 10 minutes at the reference books section. It was too overwhelming for me to see too many titles,too many publishers and too many choices! I leave it to the discretion of the home to buy with the funds available.

This Saturday, 2nd Feb is ON! I have smsed all and hopefully many will turn up at Toll Gombak by 9.00 a.m.

Do let me know if you want to come. My number is 019-6925192.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Mari Meng"Hudson" puisi


oleh Ogden Nash

Celery, raw,

develops the jaw,

But,celery, stewed,

Is more quietly chewed.

Selepas ia di'Hudson'kan,

Saderi, bila mentah,

membina rahang,

Tapi Saderi bila direndidih,

Ia lebih senyap dikunyah!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Just RM90 to RM9000!

I have checked this morning, that we just require RM90 to reach RM9000 marks.

Based on RM8000 mark earlier, the two home will get RM4000 each worth of books (of course that will include the bookshelves!) I have bought most of the books for Rumah Nur Zaharah. Below are the summary of the expenses so far.

Rumah Nur Zaharah,Janda Baik Pahang

Expenses : RM3313.80
Balance : RM686.20

Note: The balance will be used to buy reference books for UPSR,PMR and SPM.

On the other hand,

Rumah Nurul Hidayah, Kuala Kangsar,Perak

Expenses: RM2532.00
Balance : RM1468.00

Note: We still have time as the trip to K.Kangsar will only be scheduled sometime in February or early March.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Only a bookcase!

There's only one thing that make me 'pening'.

You see I bought a 5 tier bookcase as a "sample" to see how many bookcase(s) we need in order to fit in all the books we bought for this project. For that RM3000 worth of books for Nur Zaharah, it all fits into that just one bookcase!

Oi, mahalnya buku nowadays!


Saya terharu apabila dikira-kira,sumbangan untuk mendirikan sudut perpustakaan mini di kedua-dua rumah anak yatim berkenaan sudah mencecah RM8560 (melalui sumbangan & pledges).

P.S : Saya juga kagum dengan usaha Thomas Stader yang membangunkan perpustakaan di China dengan kos semurah USD150 hingga USD300 melalui projeknya The Library Project . Saya bersetuju dengan pendapatnya bahawa hanya melalui pendidikan semata-mata, kitaran kemiskinan (poverty cycle) dapat diatasi.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

2nd Feb 2008 : The visit

I have spoken to En Yahya Yusof, the orphanage manager of Rumah Nur Zaharah regarding the trip to visit and set up the library corner (or you can call mini-library) at the orphanage.

At first, I thought, 1st Feb 2008 (Friday), Hari Wilayah would be a nice day to go. But then, only people from WP can make it to Janda Baik. So after much thought, 2nd Feb 2008 (Saturday) will be the day for our visit.

You can leave your names in the comments box or email me or even sms me to confirm your attendance for that day trip to Janda Baik.

If you have any ideas on what to do that day , such as activities with the kids,pot luck ka, etc, please please share your ideas here.

Funds update: RM6680.00.

oo.Funny incident. Yesterday, I left my house keys with my mechanic and had to spent the evening at Ampang Point while waiting for my brothers from Bangi to come bringing the spare keys. So I went book-shopping at Popular Ampang Point.

Being quite regular here, I stumbled upon a lady who used to work in the college library during my college days, (that was 12 years ago).So, I went to greet her - "Excuse me...are you..". I hadn't finished my sentences when she asked, " Yes , I am looking for a management book for my daughter. Do you know where I can find it?".

Do I look like a bookstore manager to you?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


RM6580! A pledge of a set of readable encyclopedia is added to the list. Let's see what else we can do.

This project reminded me of my first build-a-library-for-a-village project when I was 19.Together with a bunch of like-minded friends, we decided to do it on our own. Without any help from college administration, we climbed up the Ministry of Sports and Youth to ask for sponsorship. We wrote letters to local publishers seeking books sponsorship. At last we got RM9000 worth of sponsorship from the ministry and boxes of books donated by Fajar Bakti, DBP,Fargoes etc.

We even invited the Minister of MARA of that time, Tok Pa, to officiate our launch do in our college much to the dismay of college administration as we didn't go through proper channel, as what they said. What to do, if we go through college, it would take us 3 weeks to reach Tok Pa's desk.

So what we did was, through a reliable contact ( his daughter who happened to be our college mate) , we got his phone number. I could still remember how 'gabra' I was, speaking to a Minister one early morning to ask him to come to officiate of launch do. He came and do whatever necessary much to our surprise.

With that RM9000, we build a library for a village up north in Padang Terap, Kg. Banggol Sembilan located just few miles from the border of Thailand near a small pekan of Padang Sanai.

Not only that, we provided scholarship of pocket money for poor schoolchildren - enough for them to continue to secondary school.

Who says 19-years-old group of teenagers cannot do wonders? I leave this anecdote for Muiz to ponder.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Books for Orphans : Update #6

I am ordering encyclopedias from a local publisher. Lucky I found out that online orders can give us better discounts than going to the bookstores.

I am planning to send the books and set up the library corner in early February.I'll be away in Sabah on the last weekends of January and coming weeks is going to be busy for me so plans to do it early is already out of questions.

First visit would be to Rumah Nur Zaharah, Janda Baik. It would be nice if we could organise some kind day-trip to Janda Baik together since it is not too far from KL.You can bring your family along. Do let me know if you are interested.

After we finish setting up the library, you are free to roam around Kg Janda Baik.Puan Ainon Mohd. who lives across the orphanage mentioned in her blog that Tn. Syed Hussein Al-Attas is offering his place for 'mandi-manda sungai' as long two basic rules are observed.

  • Bring along your own garbage bags
  • And the flowers in the garden are meant for your eyes only!

RM6380 still stands.Having the number increase to RM7K definitely will make the kids at the orphanage happy!

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Buying Books

I spent these last few days running around to buy the books for the orphanages. Only today I realised the books bought so far are hardly filled up the spaces in the bookshelves I have. Looks like it I have to focus on two orphanages instead of three and buying more books. MPH, Popular here I come.

p.s. RM6380 still stands.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Library corner's Update #5

Alhamdulillah, kutipan sudah cecah RM6380.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Today I learned new word - "mematik".At first I thought it was "memetik"- the act of plucking fruits.Only after I asked the lady, I got the meaning right.

"Mematik" is a process whereby the tempurung (inner stone of the coconut or the endocarp) is removed carefully with a small 'kapak' and leaving the testa intact, a thick albuminous endosperm (the coconut "meat" or isi kelapa), the white and fleshy edible part of the seed. The meat then will be used for making santan,kelapa parut,etc.

I was in Sabak Bernam today, visiting the lady who has cancer to find out whether she is eligible for microcredit assistance from my organisation. From our initial observation, she might have a great chance to receive the assistance. My guts feeling said so too.Of course, she has to go through the normal process of stringent microcredit application procedures before she gets the grant to start her 'ayam kampung' rearing project soon.

Anyway, I must share with you here,the 'upah' for mematik is unbelievable cheap. She is paid 12 cents for every kilo of that "isi kelapa". For every 100 coconuts she cracked open and cleaned she'll get RM6.It depends too on other factors. If it's rain - she can't go to work.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


Alhamdulillah! Siapa sangka, kutipan (melalui pledges dan bank-in) sudah cecah RM5200!

Saya mohon kalau ada sesiapa yang sudah bank-in sumbangan anda ke dalam akaun Maybank saya, harap dapat maklumkan melalui emel ( atau SMS (019-6925192) kerana ada 'transactions' yang saya tidak dapat jejak siapa pendermanya. Saya mesti trace siapa mereka itu atas dasar 'accountability' dan 'transparency'.

Mana tahu, kalau usaha kita berjaya cecah RM7000, kita boleh tambah lagi satu rumah anak yatim ke dalam projek ini!

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Update #3

Found out about Scholastic's Read 2 Cheer Program in the newspaper today. I have asked them for English books for the orphanages.Let see the outcomes.Best news today -we have raised RM4500!

Monday, January 07, 2008

Updates #2: Another library?

Collection has reached RM4000!!! I am positive we can get a mini library for one more deserving orphanage. Through a friend who do outreach work at orphanages in Malaysia, the orphanage is identified:

Rumah Anak Yatim Nurul Hidayah, Kg Cheh, Kati, Kuala Kangsar.

Keep on chipping in!

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Projek Perpustakaan Mini Rumah Nur Zaharah : Update #1

Saya pusing-pusing kedai perabot cari rak buku. Nampak gayanya rak buku 4 tingkat di Carrefour Wangsa Maju yang paling ekonomi setakat ini. Rak buku penting juga kerana kalau tinggi sangat - tak tercapai pula buku untuk si pembaca kecil.

Kutipan terkini pada 6 Januari 2008: RM3660.00

Projek Perpustakaan Mini Rumah Nur Zaharah,Janda Baik

Saya di Kedai Buku Koperasi DBP tengahari tadi setelah berpusing-pusing mencari jalan masuk namun tak jumpa.Jalan disekeliling DBP ditutup.Terpaksalah parkir di belakang Wisma Mirama.

Saya ke sana untuk membeli buku-buku untuk projek perpustakaan mini Rumah Badan Amal Nur Zaharah, Janda Baik,Pahang. Di dalam poket ada RM660.Sambil membelek-belek buku,saya fikir elok juga saya khabarkan kepada kawan-kawan melalui SMS mengenai projek ini. Hampir semua kawan-kawan saya SMS mengajak kalau-kalau mereka sudi untuk menyumbang buku.

Padan muka saya!Bertalu-talu SMS datang membalas sampai tak sempat nak membelek buku lagi lalu saya bertenggek di kaunter bayaran membalas SMS rakan-rakan yang rata-rata menyatakan ingin turut sama membantu.

Ada yang 'pledge' RM50, ada yang ingin derma RM100. Ada juga seorang rakan yang baru bertemu semula baru-baru ini selepas beberapa tahun memberitahu, dia suntuk wang ketika ini - isteri masuk hospital. Saya kata selesaikan dulu urusan yang utama. Yang penting, mahu dan ikhlas untuk bantu.

Namun, dalam banyak-banyak SMS, ada seorang kawan yang hampir buat saya sakit jantung (2 kali!).Dalam masa 2-3 minit sahaja, dia berjaya 'pujuk' bosnya untuk menderma.Katanya, "fundraising is fun!".Macam-macam.
Namun saya amat hargai usahanya itu kerana sudi war-warkan kepada orang lain untuk turut sama membantu. Begitu juga yang lain. Bukan nilai derma yang menjadi keutamaan tetapi 'the thoughts that counts'.

Bayangkan dalam masa sejam itu, kutipan sudah cecah lebih daripada RM3000! Saya dengan wajah berseri-seri menarik-narik buku-buku dari rak ke dalam troli.

Ayuh, kalau ada sesiapa lagi yang ingin bantu, silakan! Saya belum tetapkan deadlinenya lagi. Kalau dananya lebih, silap-silap kita boleh bina perpustakaan mini di rumah anak yatim yang lain pula.

Maklumat akaun untuk sumbangan: Maybank (162188016529) atas nama Iskandar Syah Ismail.

No Tel: 019-6925192 atau email

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Remembered: The History of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission

Ketika membelek-belek buku di Times The Bookshop, saya tidak dapat menahan nafsu untuk membeli Remembered: The History of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. Harganya ialah RM197.90. Walaupun buku ini ialah paling mahal yang saya pernah bayar tapi saya cukup puas hati!

Lautan bunga poppies di kulit buku mengingatkan saya kepada puisi terkenal zaman perang besar (The Great War) seperti In Flanders Fields oleh John McCrae dan juga karya-karya puisi seorang lagi penyair zaman tersebut iaitu Wilfred Owens.

Buku ini berkisar tentang sejarah dan latar belakang tanah perkuburan dan tugu kenangan yang dikelolakan oleh Commonwealth War Graves Commission di seluruh dunia termasuk Malaysia. Setakat ini, saya sudah melawat Commonwealth War Graves (CWR) di Taiping, Perak dan sejak itu saya sentiasa menyimpan impian untuk melawat semua CWR di dunia terutamanya di Somme,Belgium dan Normandy,France.

Ada sesiapa nak ikut?

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Books for the Orphans

I received a birthday greeting postcard from the Times The Bookshop today.This coming 7th January I'll be 32. So they gave a RM3 birthday voucher plus 20% discount on books from any of their outlets nationwide.

I never celebrate birthday since I was 10 years old. This time around I am 'celebrating' it for a better reason by using the voucher I got to buy books for Nur Zaharah Orphanage in Janda Baik, Pahang.Plus, I am redeeming my credit card points to claim for more book vouchers.

Of course, I would be delighted if you want to chip in. You can pledge your contributions via email to and let me know your pledge(s).

Or you can just bank-in your contributions to my Maybank account (MBB: 162188016529 - ISKANDAR SYAH ISMAIL) .

To date, I already have RM500. My target is to raise around RM2000 (so that we can get about 250 books). This funds will be used to buy bookshelves,children's books, teen novels, motivational books and career guidances.

P.S Frankly, I am quite reluctant to accept donated books. From my experience so far, only 10% of the donated books are usable. The rest, will go into the bin.