Local photographer aims to raise more than RM45,000 to light up the lives of Orang Asli

Local photographer aims to raise more than RM45,000 to light up the lives of Orang Asli

Kuala Lumpur, 2 June – Bonnie Yap’s latest photography exhibition, “Through the eyes of South Georgia” – Watch, Respect, Capture was officially launched at Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur, yesterday.

Hosted by Traders Hotel, the main sponsor for this exhibition was Mah Sing Group.

In conjunction with World Environment Day on 5th June, Bonnie is exhibiting over 20 photographs taken at the South Georgia islands, a British overseas territory in Antartica. The exhibition is open to public from today to 30 June 2016 at Traders Hotel, Kuala Lumpur.

The event was officiated by Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Tuanku Raja Muda Perlis Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Jamalullail and Raja Puan Muda Perlis Tuanku Lailatul Shahreen Akashah Khalil by unveiling the photographer’s personal best piece of the exhibition, a photo of two Chinstrap penguins on top of an iceberg.

That particular photo was selected not just because it was beautifully shot with the right angle and exposure, but also because Bonnie was amazed by the ability of the little penguins to climb up on the big iceberg.

Bonnie said, “We visited more than 10 islands throughout the trip and I remembered at one time when our ship was sailing I saw these two penguins from afar. Being such a small creature, I was amazed they were able to climb up such a big iceberg and it made me realise that these animals have very strong survival instincts. I hope the moments captured in my photographs will enable visitors to understand and see the beauty of nature and in turn, motivate and inspire them to think about their actions before they do anything that will be detrimental to the environment.”

The photographer shared that there was no native population on the islands, and the team which took them around were polite but firm about their ground rules such as no introduction of any foreign objects into the environment, nor take anything away. This meant no food, not even a seed, and the ‘take nothing but photographs, leave nothing but footprints’ policy was strictly adhered to. All photographers were observers. They watch the beautiful landscape and wildlife, respect them, and finally capture the images for posterity.

Mah Sing Group’s Group Managing Director Tan Sri Dato’ Sri Leong Hoy Kum commented, “As a responsible corporate citizen, we recognise that the Earth’s natural resources are essential in many aspects of the development industry, and are committed to safeguarding the environment in our business operations.  This is embodied through the Group’s various green efforts in our project designs, layouts and innovations in property development products. Mah Sing’s environmental management is based on the Group’s Environmental Management Plan (EMP) derived from the recommendations in the Environmental Impact Analysis (EIA), and we are delighted to support Bonnie’s project which will spread more awareness on this issue.”

Charitable Cause

Following a successful solo photo exhibition in 2014 – The Jewel of the Artic which raised RM79,000 for Assunta Hospital’s Social Welfare Outpatient Programme, Bonnie collaborated with Mah Sing Group in hope to replicate the success with this new exhibition.

Bonnie set a modest goal of RM45,000 from the photo sales to be donated to Mah Sing Foundation, a charity arm of Mah Sing Group. The fund will be used to aid Incitement’s Liter of Light project. The remaining collection will be used to fund surgery for a needy infant at Institut Jantung Negara, a partnership between Bonnie and Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur.

Liter of Light is an international humanitarian movement bringing renewable light to energy poverty areas.  In Malaysia, the project is executed by Incitement, a social business which promotes volunteering and social impact in 43 countries.  Mah Sing Foundation has pledged RM100,000 and together with the targeted RM45,000 photos sales from Bonnie, they will be able to light up the lives of 67 Orang Asli families by installing 135 lights. 

“Mah Sing Foundation is honoured to be involved in this innovative fund raising activity in aid of the less fortunate. Together with Bonnie Yap, we are very happy to be able to raise funds for Liter of Light to improve the lives of the indigenous families in Malaysia. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for your support to this worthy cause,” said Dato’ Syed Norulzaman B. Syed Kamarulzaman, Chairman of Mah Sing Foundation.

“Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur is very proud to be a part of this project. The objective of CSR in the Hotel is to work towards a long-term, sustainable initiative with a view to promote a safer and healthier environment for employees, a better living opportunity for the community and creating an environment where the employees and the community are brought to awareness and a cause for a need to improve the natural environment. In all things, there must be sustainable long term benefits to all recipients of our partners this must benefit them either financially, physically and emotionally. Coming together with Bonnie, who has very kindly agreed to partner with the hotel, we will be funding the surgery for a needy infant at Institut Jantung Negara. Bonnie has pledged RM10,000 from her photo sales for the cause. We would like to thank her for this opportunity and our friends and associates for the support and cooperation to ensure a successful fundraising”, said Christian Nannucci, General Manager, Traders Hotel Kuala Lumpur.

Bonnie said, “I hope to be able to raise more funds from the exhibition, as I also wish to help a center for the physically challenged.  I hope that Malaysians will turn up in droves to visit the exhibition.”

Individuals or corporations interested in purchasing a photo or two from the exhibition for charity can contact the Communications Manager of Traders Hotel, Theresa Goh at theresa.goh@tradershotels.com or 03-2332 9821

Profile-Bonnie Yap

Graduated from the Malaysia Institute of Arts, Bonnie started her photography career with a boutique advertising agency in 1990. After two years, she decided to move and joined Malaysia’s leading English newspaper, The Star Publications. She was assigned to the news desk for seven years before moving on to the magazine arm of the company. There, she had the opportunity to broaden her photography portfolio and experience as she worked on capturing lifestyle shots for food, entertainment, and business magazines.

After a 12-year stint with The Star Publications, Bonnie decided it was time for her to move to the next level in her professional career. With her extensive experience in the industry, she is much sought after by corporate, FMCG, telecommunications as well as luxury fashion and lifestyle brands. She has certainly grown from a junior news and events photographer to a versatile professional photographer. Her work extends to indoor studio food shoots to entertainment, travel and fashion. She has also been commissioned by regional clients for photo shoots around the world.

Bonnie’s 2013 trip to the Artic ticked one item on her bucket list and spawned her first solo photo exhibition, The Jewel of the Arctic – A Photo Exhibition by Bonnie Yap.  However, her travel bug got worse after the trip and resulted in her 2015 jaunt to Antartica.  Besides justifying the trip to her conscience, it produced photos for her second solo exhibition. Bonnie’s BIG GOAL is to motivate and inspire others to think about their actions before they do anything that will be detrimental to the environment. Bonnie’s SMALL GOAL is for generous Malaysians to be even more generous in 2016.

About Mah Sing Foundation

Established in 2005, Mah Sing Foundation is Mah Sing Group’s Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) platform. The Foundation celebrates the achievement of Mah Sing Group’s long-term and continuous commitment to being a responsible and active participant in building community partnerships, both locally and abroad.

Mah Sing Group believes that a consolidated effort in CSR initiatives will be more effective and impactful in benefiting the needy. Mah Sing Foundation actively seeks to raise funds via annual fundraising activities and events to champion causes with the Foundation’s guidelines.

Mah Sing Foundation does this through a four-pronged approach:

  • Medical Assistance for Malaysians who are suffering from disease and disability, or are critically ill. The Foundation will also carry out and support schemes by organizations which look after public health and welfare, including giving financial support.
  • Financial Assistance and Relief Schemes for the poor and distressed.
  • Education Assistance Comprising Subsidies and Donations to needy and deserving students.
  • Encouragement of Social and Sporting Activities which will enrich the community and serve to promote national unity.

For more details on these and other initiatives under the Mah Sing Foundation, please visit http://www.mahsingcommunity.com.my/

Image Caption: Jane Leong, on behalf of Mah Sing Group, presents a mock cheque to Bonnie Yap (L-R) Dato’ Syed Norulzaman B. Syed Kamarulzaman, Chairman of Mah Sing Foundation, Jane Leong, Director, Group Strategy & Operations of Mah Sing Group, Duli Yang Teramat Mulia Tuanku Raja Muda Perlis Tuanku Syed Faizuddin Putra Jamalullail, Raja Puan Muda Perlis Tuanku Lailatul Shahreen Akashah Khalil and Bonnie Yap, photographer​.

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