KUCHING: Kuching Life Care Society is still short of RM5.5 million for the construction of its Hospice and Palliative Care Centre, estimated to cost RM14 million.
The project comprises the construction of a three-storey building at RM10 million and procurement of medical equipment at RM4 million.
Proposed to be built at Desa Wira in Batu Kawa here, the care centre is set to be the largest hospice in Malaysia, and second of its kind initiated by
a non-governmental organisation (NGO).
According to Kuching Life Care Society founder Hung Sung Huo, the first hospice in Malaysia built by an NGO is the Pure Lotus Hospice of Compassion in Penang.
“The hospice in Penang is expected to be operational next year while the construction of our hospice in Desa Wira can be expected to commence next year.
“At the moment, we are still waiting for an approval from Padawan Municipal Council (MPP) while we have already obtained approvals from the Ministry of Health, Land and Survey Department and State Planning Authority.
“We are hopeful of launching the project next year. Our architect says that the construction should take about 15 months to complete,” he said in an interview with The Borneo Post at the society’s operation centre here yesterday.
As of yesterday, the society has raised RM8.5 million for the Hospice and Palliative Care Centre that consists of a courtyard, administration area, physiotherapy room, examination and treatment room, common facilities, leisure room, open area, patient rooms and prayer room.
The centre aims to provide comfort, improve quality of life, promote dignity as well as to relieve physical, emotional and spiritual suffering of patients with terminal illness.
Hung said the society had recently obtained tax exemption for donors granted under Subsection 44(6) of the Income Tax Act 1967.
He said they could not be more grateful that such exemption is finally happening after a decade of efforts in applying for it.
“From Dec 1, individuals who make donations to Kuching Life Care Society can ask for the tax exemption receipt.
“We are very thankful that even without the tax exemption before this, many people from all walks of life have continuously donated to us,” he enthused.
As appreciation to regular donors, volunteers and individuals, Hung said the society is hosting its Chinese New Year dinner at Thian Court, Crown Square here on Feb 9, 2020.
He said at least 50 tables would be lined up for the gathering from 6.30pm. Tickets for the dinner at RM500 per table are now available. Interested individuals are advised to call 011-33635991.
Apart from the annual dinner, Hung said the National Cancer Society Kuching branch will be hosting the Malaysia Hospice Congress at Imperial Hotel here from July 24 to 26, 2020.
“It will mark the very first time such congress is held in Kuching. International speakers have been invited to deliver their talks at the congress.”
Hung, who has been tirelessly committed to rendering community and charity services, is one of the speakers expected at the July 2020 congress.
“Registration for the congress opens on Jan 1, 2020. We hope more people will join to learn about hospice,” he added.