Realizing A Two-Year Dream


Photo by Wuan.

For the twenty one years since being disabled, there was never one day I did not wish I could do something more either for myself or for the people around me, especially Mum. I had taken and I have taken. For many people, their lives revolved around me. They made sure my needs and interests were well taken care of.

Now I still have friends who took my well-being into consideration. I am thankful for that. They have sacrificed time, money and effort in making sure I am comfortable whatever my endeavor. As I have so often said, I am blessed. God have been merciful to have sent so many Samaritans along this arduous journey of mine. It was difficult but the many people along the way have made it more interesting. Thank you my dear friends. You know who you are.

In the twenty one years since being disabled, I have never had such a desire to accomplish something as I have done recently. Mum was the reason. Suanie gave me the impetus. Jason got it going when we talked about it in IRC. Four more brave generous souls joined in. This is more than I could have asked for. The Hair For Hospice donation drive has managed to garner RM5,170 in pledges to date. Thank you all for your generosity. And thank you all for allowing me to realize a two-year dream of doing something for the Hospice-At-Home Programme.

Nevertheless, the Hair For Hospice is not purely a donation drive, the other purpose being to create an awareness of the Hospice-At-Home Programme. Terminally ill patients and families of people so afflicted can get help to cope with the nursing and medical care and counseling during such distressing times in the comfort of their own homes, hospitals or nursing homes.

Palliative care is important for people who are fighting the toughest and in all probabilities the final battle of their lives. The core philosophy of the Hospice is that everyone has the right to die relatively pain-free and with dignity. That is what the Penang Hospice has been doing and they have done a good job, providing palliative care to all who need it, regardless of race or religion.

I can attest to that, having been at the receiving and of their selfless generosity during the most painful period of Mum’s and my life. Truly, I would not have known how to cope with the situation had it not been for the Penang Hospice. If there is any one word to describe them, I can only think of angels. They are beyond doubt angels in our midst.

There are many people to thank for giving me the opportunity to realize this dream. I would like to thank Dato Dr. T. Devaraj for giving me the authorization and provided me with the resources to carry this through. This meant the world to me. Thank you to Dr. Oo and Chitra of the Penang Hospice who had also helped me in many ways and I am grateful for their assistance and dedication to this cause. Special thanks go to Palliative Care Nurse Karen Gan who made Mum so comfortable during those final weeks and for helping dress my pressure sore. Please accept my sincerest gratitude. I would not have made it without your help. Thank you.

I would like to thank Jason Tee who got me off with this campaign, I would like to thank Bryan and Sharizal who volunteered to shave along with me. These guys are the greatest! And to Devyne who thought this is the right thing to do and also to dedicate her bald head to her aunt who is undergoing treatment in Singapore for cancer. God bless you and your aunt. And to Jason Lioh, the latest and last addition to the team, thank you for the sacrifice. You are all an inspiration to me. We hardly knew each other and you all stepped up to make a difference to people who need that help most.

Thank you to all bighearted donors who have helped us achieve the target. I can never thank you enough. A big thank you also go out to so many of you who have supported this campaign by promoting it in your blogs, through word of mouth and giving us publicity in the media. You will always be in my prayers. Please do not let this end. I hope those who have money to spare to continue supporting the Penang Hospice-At-Home Programme. They need all the support you can give to help others who need it. Know that your compassion will ease the pain of someone who is struggling to hang on. Giving them the dignity of palliative care is the least we can do for other fellow humans who are walking the last few miles of their lives. I thank you all from the bottom of my heart. God bless.

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. Columnist of Breaking Barriers in The Borneo Post. Principal Trainer at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

18 thoughts on “Realizing A Two-Year Dream”

  1. Your determination, courage and strength is inspiring. Congratulations for organising and achieving the fund-raising target.

    What did you with the hair, by the way? 😉

  2. Shalom Peter!
    Congratulations~!!!! happy and glade that you have ralised your dream!!hope you have more to come this Christmas,i know its still way to early… but still.. its always good to give rather than take!! God Bless!!

  3. Peter,

    You are an inspiration! From the first time I met you, I thought this is one different person. The positivity, general enthusiasm and passion for what you believe in gives meaning and impetus to life! I congratulate you for a womderful campaign and the great publicity that you have garnered for the cause of hospice-at-home. As you know we are planning another Relay For Life on 11-12 March 06. Those who attended the RFL05 know what the event means. It is not just about walking around a treack or about fund-raising. It is also about celebrating with survivors who have fought against cancer and won the battle. It is also about lighting a small candle after sunset to commemorate the life of those who lost the fight and are no longer with us. It is also about correcting misconceptions about the disease and making people know how to avoid the disease, and fight it by knowing what to look for, early detection, and knowing how to access people who can help in the correct way (not through unvarifiable testimony, false hopes, suscipious and costly herbal treatments etc.) We would like your support again to publicise this event which will be launched on 11 November at Rumah Hospice. Unfortunately I shall be in K.L. on that weekend, but if you are in Penang on that day, I know Dr. Devaraj, Chitra, Karen and others on the team will simply love to see you at the launch.
    All the best and God bless you,
    Oo Khaik Cheang

  4. I knew from the very first time I had contact with that there is so much in you Peter, and I am happy to see that this is coming out of you in full through this project. As I said yesterday, there is this passion in you, this internal drive, to move this project forward, and you, in your humple mind, don’t want to take too much credit for it. It is a group that is helping you, sure, but in a group, there are drivers, and you are one of the main drivers of the group to help disabled people in Malaysia. There is so much that needs to be done in Malaysia and it is the small things that make the difference. Keep it going, Peter, and create history!

    I found this link to an article by BBC that apparently launched a website for disabled people. I am not sure if this helps, but here is the link, nevertheless: http://www.dmeurope.com/default.asp?ArticleID=11095

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  6. Sashi,
    I am keeping it for the memory. I do not think I am going to keep my hair this long again, ever.

    kimberlycun,
    I will note that down – one teh tarik.

    adriene,
    Thank you.

    midnite lily,
    i hope many more will come and contribute not only money but effort and time to this and similar charitable organisations. They need all the support they can get.

    cyber-red,
    I will remember that KL is a big city the next time, unlike Penang where every place is within a half hour drive.

    She’s Jess,
    Yes, that barber is in Pandan Perdana. You frequent that area?

    allison,
    I will give you a strand when we meet.

    Angeline,
    Thank you. Yes, it is such a satisfaction to be able to give.

    Dr. Oo,
    I am glad i could help the Hospice-At-Home programme although in a small way and with lots of support from fellow bloggers and generous donors. I would love to be there for the launching of the RFL05 but I will still be in KL on that day. However, I will try to make it a point to attend the even in March. I wish the launching and he event all the success. You people are the noblest I have ever met. I am blessed to have been touched by you all. Thank you.

    Ms.Bloom,
    Thank you.

    Andreas,
    I do what I can. Hopefully, the coming generations of disabled people will be able to enjoy the equalization of opportunities that is beginning to take shape all over the world now. There are many more activists for such causes that are more worthy of mention than me. They are an inspiration to me and to many who have been touched by the effort that they put in to make it easier for us. Thank you for sharing the link.

    Dee,
    Hello fellow baldy. You are soooo brave. May you be blessed manyfold for this act of kindness.

    Kuzco,
    Come join the club?

    anthraxxxx,
    Thank you.

    JoeC,
    Thank you to you too.

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