Marketplace Leadership Centre (MLC) in collaboration with Marketplace Penang, recently organized a conference titled ‘Transforming Our City Together’ on April 8 and 9 at the Kompleks Masyarakat Penyayang, Penang.
The aim of the conference is to bring people, who are keen to make a change in the communities for the betterment of their city, together.
The first day of the conference kicked off with a keynote address by by Dr Kim Tan, co-founder and trustee of the Transformational Business Network (TBN)
He said that giving aid to the community does not develop the community; instead it makes the community dependent. Therefore he suggested using business enterprise creatively to serve and develop the community so that they become self-sustaining.
Melanie Huburt from Youth With A Mission spoke on moral responsibility towards migrants and refugees, after providing some information about the problems and challenges faced by migrants. She also outlined, what communities can do to help and support migrants.
The conference followed with two workshops, which was held after lunch. The participants had six workshop topics to choose – externally focused communities, education, business, justice, immigrant work and interfaith dialogue.
In the education workshop, Brother John D’Cruz, from the La Salle Learning Centre, managed to draw a good crowd with his activity-based workshop, where he coerced the people into participating.
“Education, where knowledge and information are fed, is very vital to transformation,” said the brother, who stressed that information leads to formation and formation leads to transformation.
On the second day of the conference, a hive of activities was seen in Kompleks Masyarakat Penyayang. 36 booths were erected for an exhibition, which provided organizations from both corporate and non-profit a space to showcase their work that had a great impact on community.
Big names such as Mary Kay, Tupperware Brands, Diamond showcased their Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives along with a whole host of non-profit organizations such as E.P.I.C. (Extraordinary People Impacting Community), Christian Caring Fellowship, Youth With A Mission (YWAM), Eden Community Services, Penang Mobile Medical Clinic and Johor Bahru Community Centre.
Several mini seminars facilitated by Marketplace Penang, Voice Your Change and Real Love Ministry were held concurrently with the exhibition.
One of the most popular sessions was with Mary Kay on how one can groom oneself to success and a session with Marianna Pascal who gave an impression of a foreigner’s command of English in Manglish.
The highlight of the conference was the charity dinner ‘Night of Hope’ on April 8, which was attended by over 600 people at the Lim Lean Teng Hall at Han Chiang Associated Chinese Schools Association.
The money raised at this dinner went to Projek Harap, a project centre on education for poor pre-school children, which will be used as an effective tool to break the cycle of poverty.