RCE Greater Gombak - 2022

Muhajirin-Ansar Sejahtera Community (MArS) - Livelihood of Refugees and Beyond
Basic Information
Title of project : 
Muhajirin-Ansar Sejahtera Community (MArS) - Livelihood of Refugees and Beyond
Submitting RCE: 
RCE Greater Gombak
Contributing organization(s) : 
- Future Global Islamic Network (JREC)
- REC Kuantan, Gombak, Klang, Penang & Kuala Terengganu
- Global Peace Mission Malaysia
- Ammar Al-Fateh Trust Foundation
- International Islamic College
- International Islamic School Malaysia
- UNHCR Malaysia
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Malaysia
- International Catholic Migration Commission Malaysia (ICMC)
- Kawasan Rukun Tetangga (Neighbourhood Group) Taman Greenwood and Taman Batu
- Local Community at Jalan Pa’ Abu, Butterworth
- Majlis Bandaraya Seberang Perai (Seberang Perai Municipal Council)
- Malaysian Sign Language Association
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pulau Pinang State Islamic Council
- National Population and Family Development Board Malaysia (NPFDB)
- Rohingya Community at Kampung Pandan, Kuantan
- Rohingya refugee communities in Klang and Gombak (Selangor), Kuantan (Pahang), Seberang Perai (Pulau Pinang), and Kuala Terengganu (Terengganu)
- Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (Malaysian Islamic Youth Movement)
- Volunteers from International Islamic University Malaysia
- Volunteers from Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UNISZA)
- Ambassadors and representatives of the diplomatic community, United Nations’ Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Myanmar, Members of Parliament, academics, non-governmental organisations, private philanthropists, refugee students, and refugee community leaders
Format of project: 
Community Transformation, Community Awareness & Engagement, Experiential
Language of project: 
Malay and English
Date of submission:
Friday, September 9, 2022
Additional resources: 
1. https://rce2g.iium.edu.my/
2. https://www.jrecmalaysia.com/
3. https://rec-sihat2022.blogspot.com/?m=1
Geographical & Education Information
Peninsular Malaysia
Address of focal point institution for project: 
Future Global Islamic Network (JREC) ,1st floor, 72-1, Jalan Prima SG 3, Prima Seri Gombak, 68100 Batu Caves, Selangor
Socioeconomic and environmental characteristics of the area : 
The Peninsular of Malaysia comprises several settlements of Rohingya refugees. This project touches on the activities carried out throughout the country while specifically focusing on Kuantan (Pahang) and Batu Caves (Selangor) among other states involved. Both populations of approximately 443, 796 and 225,052 respectively consist of residents of all economic levels i.e. high-, middle-, and low-income groups. Kuantan is also a resident for 1700 Rohingya population Zooming into Sg Ular, an area in Mukim Beserah Kuantan, there are around 124 Rohingya families out of a total of 700 population.
Description of sustainable development challenge(s) in the area the project addresses: 
Statistically, about a quarter of the almost 100,000 Rohingya refugees registered with UNHCR in Malaysia are aged below 18. Among the pressing threats for this group are not only their education but also their livelihood, health, and welfare overall making them among the most vulnerable. The absence of a clear legal framework that protects refugees in the country causes them to be considered illegal immigrants except those who receive basic legal protections under UNHCR. Most of their families survive from wage to wage due to the lack of a stable income given their status and lack of formal education.
November, 2021 to September, 2022
Recognizing the detrimental impact of the laws that discriminate against the refugees from enjoying equality in livelihood, health, and education, the activities are designed to address the challenges faced by them in those aspects. Working closely with the Future Global Islamic Network (JREC) which is a partner of RCE Greater Gombak that manages Refugees Education Centres around the country tells the states of the refugees in those aspects call for medium assistance in terms of economic sustenance as well as long-term efforts for advocacy of policy reformation and alternatives for education and health. The rationale behind the combination of activities is to foster better livelihood for the refugees which include welfare protection, eradication of hunger and poverty, incorporate education for sustainable development in the engagements with refugee children and build the capacities of educators to be equipped to attend to the refugee children from the humanitarian skills.
1. To foster better livelihood for the refugees which include welfare protection, eradication of hunger and poverty, and incorporation of education for sustainable development
2. To advance the advocacy of policy change towards inclusivity and equality for refugees
3. To bridge the gap between local communities and refugees.
4. To ease the burdens of the refugees in terms of economic sustenance
5. To promote better physical, emotional, and mental health of the refugee children
6. To equip refugee children with skills and knowledge about sustainability
8. To expose local youth to the sustainability issues surrounding refugees
9. To instill humanitarian activism in the teaching and learning approach in Refugee Education Centres (RECs)
Activities and/or practices employed: 
Among the activities in the project include:

1. Aid and Provision
-Food distribution for the refugee students as part of the ‘Feed for the Needy’ programme and flood victim assistance
-Distribution of school uniforms and bags – Sponsorship of Rohingya Students in Malaysia 2021 (collaboration of
-Aid Distribution during Movement Control Order, co-organised with The Association of Services and Community
Development of Gombak District, Selangor (PSPK)

2. Capacity Building - non-formal and informal
-Cross-country running, leadership camp, humanitarian week, STEM week, and photography workshops for the refugee
-Hands-on sustainability projects for refugee children called Pro-Reid
Parents-and teachers meetings and teachers’ humanitarian training as capacity building for humanitarian activism

3. Health and Welfare
-COVID-19 vaccination in IIUM for UNHCR registered refugees in Selangor, specifically Selayang.

4.Policy advocacy
-High-level roundtable discussion via the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Refugee Policy
Size of academic audience: 
1. Aid and Provision
-Feed for the Needy and Flood Victim Assistance – This activity distributed cooked meals and food baskets that
benefitted the families of approximately 415 refugee students and teachers.
-Funding of RM41 375 from individual for #HE4Rohingya to support Rohingya student from Johor and Penang sitting for
International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE) & national examination

2. Capacity Building
-Cross-country running, leadership camp, humanitarian week, STEM week, and photography workshops for the refugee
children – This combination of activities that involved over 800 refugee students and teachers helped with their
physical health, emotional, and mental health.
-Parents-and teachers meetings and teachers’ humanitarian training - This activity engaged 50 teachers and 250 parents
and upskilled 48 teachers and 11 JREC officers respectively.

3. Integration of the project into formal required course of the university
-Sustainability Project Development (Pro-Reid 2021) – This activity produced 16 projects related to sustainable
development led by students and teachers from 6 Rohingya Education Centres (RECs).
-Community Profiling – This activity had approximately 111 non-refugee university students engaged with the refugee
community and produced a database mapping 7 refugee communities.

4. Policy advocacy
-High-level Roundtable Discussion – This activity involving 88 participants among multilevel stakeholders has produced
a report with approximately 22 policy recommendations
Lessons learned: 
We learned that involving multi-stakeholders is crucial in the betterment of livelihood for the refugees which includes discussions on the policies around refugees to produce policies that are in touch with the grassroots reality. At the same time, the activities on the ground that involved the university community and students and teachers of the Refugee Education Centres (RECs) encouraged a sense of more empathy and less prejudice between the refugee community and the locals as the two groups cooperated in the process, embedding the value of experiential learning as part of ESD. Despite that, language difference or limitation remains a barrier at some points of the engagement. The activities also signal opportunities for scalable ESD as proper guidance and platform prove to be effective for refugees themselves to be empowered in addressing sustainability issues.
Key messages: 
Realizing Education for Sustainable Development for Refugees means integrating economic, social, and environmental aspects. The project acknowledged laws as a pivotal factor for livelihood, addressed hunger as an obstacle that discourages children from going to school, attended to their overall health, and empowered their community to address the sustainability issues around them.
Relationship to other RCE activities: 
The project applied the COMMEET toolkits which was developed by RCE London together with several other partners including members of RCE Greater Gombak. The pilot testing of the toolkit also took place at Sungai Ular, Kuantan, Malaysia. This toolkit accelerated community engagement with refugees to be more effective and realistic, thus assisting the local communities to have better understanding of the refugees The progress had been presented at the 12th Global RCE Conference to share the good practices which had attracted potential regional collaborations. Recently during the 14th Asia Pacific Regional Meeting, COMMEET Fellowship was presented as one of the potential collaborative projects among RCE within the region. Neighbouring RCE Greater Kuala Lumpur is also involved as a collaborator in some of the activities and initiatives under the project.
- Independent contributors
- Pusat Infaq Wadah (Wadah Charity Centre)
- Majlis Agama Islam Selangor (Selangor Islamic Religious Council)
- Majlis Agama Islam Selangor (Selangor Islamic Religious Council)
- Pertubuhan Salwa Malaysia
- Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (Malaysian Islamic Youth Movement)
- Global Peace Mission Malaysia
- Ammar Al-Fateh Trust Foundation
- International Catholic Migration Commission Malaysia (ICMC)
- Independent contributors
UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
(https://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/sdgs) and other themes of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD)
SDG 1 - End poverty in all its forms everywhere 
SDG 2 - End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture 
SDG 10 - Reduce inequality within and among countries 
SDG 16 - Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels 
SDG 17 - Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalise the global partnership for sustainable development 
ESD for 2030-Priority Action Areas
Priority Action Area 1 - Advancing policy 
Priority Action Area 2 - Transforming learning and training environments 
Priority Action Area 3 - Developing capacities of educators and trainers 
Priority Action Area 4 - Mobilizing youth 
Priority Action Area 5 - Accelerating sustainable solutions at local level 
I acknowledge the above: