Free Malaysia Today: Selayang volunteer school offers hope to Rohingya kids

KUALA LUMPUR: Despite relying entirely on donations from well-wishers, an informal school in Selayang continues to provide education and moral support to more than 150 children of Rohingya refugees at its humble premises every day.

Rafiq Ismail, the principal of the Pelangi Kasih school, praised the volunteers who help him, saying they are so dedicated that they also use the site as a centre to help the needy in the neighbourhood.

“From 9am to noon we teach them regular academic subjects like Bahasa Malaysia, English and Science, while from 2pm to 6pm we teach them about Islam,” Rafiq, 42, said.

Of the nine teachers there, five teach the academic subjects while four teach Islamic subjects.

The children, who are mostly from around Batu Caves and Selayang, are also provided food during their rest period.

Rafiq, who has been helping Rohingya refugees for over 10 years, said the Batu Caves area is now home to more than 10,000 people from the migrant community.

“Over the past 10 years, I have seen their numbers grow steadily because many of them are able to find work in this area.

“They do a variety of jobs, such as in the wet market, that Malaysians do not fancy,” he said.

Intelligent students

Burhanuddin, 27, a student with the International Islamic University (IIUM), helps out at the school by volunteering to teach the children Arabic language and Islamic studies.

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