Flying colours!

September 09, 2016

A few weeks ago I volunteered in an awesome project. Our task was to paint murals for a primary school in Puchong. Geez what a great job we'd done! The results are super adorable.

I first heard about this interesting voluntary group from my friend Pey Sien. Her friend Mr Jian, is dedicated to providing free mural painting service for primary schools. For the past few years, he and his team had brought magic to numerous children through colours. They're officially known as 凡人壁画自愿组. Interestingly, the founder hasn't come up with an English name for his NGO yet. I'll call them the Ordinary People Mural Painting Volunteer Group. They are the ordinary people who do extraordinary things. 

An engineering degree from UM didn't satisfy Mr Jian. He decided to change his life course to a meaningful one, that is to cultivate and contribute to children's education. Mural painting is a voluntary project that he does apart from his teaching job in Kuantan.

I think all these murals are his designs! He prepared 15 of them, each with a special theme related to love (my favourite was the lion and tapir in the 'Love friends' mural - super cute). Our job was to first sketch the drawing on the wall with chalk, then bring the animals to life with vibrant paints. 

Some friends, even my family, doubted if I could draw. They thought I was there just to clean brushes and pass water bottles. Here's one proof, mum. #achievementunlocked
That happy monkey is one of everyone's favourites! The theme for this mural is "Love earth".
'Love to save money.' Hmmm need to work on that.
At first I was intimidated by the idea that we had to draw 15 murals, in two days. Fifteen baby, fifteen. I had zero experience, zero expectation about how long or how challenging it's going to be. Can we do that? It's our first time. Are two days enough? What if it turns out ugly..?

Well before I even started worrying, things began to come together quickly. Every volunteer was so talented and engaged. The plain brown walls had the first chalk sketches, the first stroke of paint, then the animals started to look animated one after another, touch-ups here and there, all the way to the final outcome... it's amazing. We did it. To be able to witness the whole process is so fulfilling. 

To me this was a good experience in many ways. The inner child in me were running around happily, having a good time with the cute animals and playing with the paint. And the fact that I could actually contribute, and paint, it brought me a huge sense of satisfaction and pleasant surprise.

The gentleman in white shirt is the headmaster of the school. Teachers and parents turned up to help too. The community engagement was amazing.
The amazing people. The corridor behind us is looking awesome now. Hope the children like it.
While it seems like you're giving while volunteering, you gain more than you'd imagined. Along the way, we gain a sense of satisfaction, self-worth, gratitude, new skills, and warm smiles.

Dedicating time and commitment for a good cause is definitely not easy. Let's give a round of applause to Mr Jian and his team for their interesting ideas and contribution. ☀

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