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UTM Skudai students make mission trip to Pensiangan

PENSIANGAN – Nineteen students from Catholic Students Society (CSS) of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) Skudai, Johor Bahru made a mission trip to Pensiangan Sabah on 30 June – 14 July 2017.

The group is also known as GIFT (Growing in Faith Together).

The main aim was to support the construction of kindergarten at Tanjung Harapan, Pensiangan and building of water closet for kindergarten at Kampung Tinanduk, Pensiangan.

The group arrived at Katedral St Francis Xavier June 30 and stayed at the pastoral guesthouse.  Upon arrival, team leader Rayvinshie briefed them and they met the project superviser Adrian B Lasimbang.

The group split into two teams with one in Tanjung Harapan and another one in Kg Tinanduk. After morning Mass July 1, they started their journey from Keningau. Arriving in Pensiangan in the evening they settled down at St Michael Chapel.

They received a warm welcome from the villages and feasted on a variety of ‘lauk kampung’ made by the villagers.

On July 2 morning,  a team left for Kg Tinanduk from Tanjung Harapan while the other team stayed behind.  After 30 minutes of boat ride, they arrived safely at Kg Tinanduk led by Lasimbang.  The team spent the week doing construction and working with kids. They spent most of their time outside completing the toilet construction, digging a manhole,  painting and drawing of the kindergarten side walls. A visit by Franciscan Sister Dorothy also helped and inspired them to keep working.

In Tanjung Harapan, the team did the renovation of the kindergarten by replacing the wooden floor with new planks and cleaning the kindergarten.

They also replaced the ceiling of the pastor’s house. Tuition was given to Form 3 students every evening and a motivational talk was given to the students of SMK Pensiangan.

Throughout the week, the team developed a strong, working relationship with the villagers – not just with the younger generation but also with the elders. Besides work, the team had time to visit a waterfall and enjoy it.

The members hoped to visit the place again in the future. –

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