KUCHING: Former Josephians are called upon to contribute generously towards the restoration of the old Mill Hill Block of SMK St Joseph here.
Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian, who is also Old Josephians’ Association (OJA) president, said the block is in need of urgent restoration after parts of the building – where classrooms are located – were declared unsafe due to serious cracks.
A fundraising dinner and run were organised last year during which many ex-Josephians generously contributed, though the amount raised was still far short of the required cost, he said before the prize-giving ceremony for the second annual Ora Et Labora Run on Sunday.
On the run, Dr Sim said the event was an opportunity for alumni to `come back to school` at least once a year.
“Next year, perhaps earlier in September 2019, the OJA will organise the run again. And this time, we are going to incorporate a charity sale in the school to inculcate the Lasallian values – to help the last, the lost and the least.
“After runners complete the run, they can still hang around in the school compound for a fellowship breakfast and to shop for knick-knacks,” he said.
More than 1,300 runners comprising students of SMK St Joseph and St Joseph’s Private School, old boys and the public took part in the run.
Themed `Back to School`, it was organised by OJA for the second straight year to encourage St Joseph’s old boys to come back and contribute to their alma mater.
The run was flagged off by Dr Sim, together with Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Kuching Most Reverend Simon Poh, organising committee, principals and teachers of the St Joseph Family of Schools.
The run organisers, meanwhile, said the main objective of the run was to raise funds for students’ extra-curricular activities, while also serving as a reunion for former students and as an opportunity to render service to their alma mater.
This year, the event was divided into the 5km fun run and 10km competitive run, where there were two categories for the public – Open Men and Open Women – as well as an Old Josephian category and one for existing St Joseph students (boys and girls).
The Student Category aimed to promote active competition between young Josephians in addition to the school sports day, and provided another platform for students to improve themselves in representing St Joseph and to excel in sports.
Those who completed the run received medals, while the top five finishers of the 10km competitive run received additional cash prizes and trophies for the students.
The top five finishers for the 10km Women Open Category were Lee Leh Ha, Christabel Lim, Lavina Kong, Tang Sii Eng and Rachel Ling, while the top five finishers for the 10km Men Open Category were Mohd Shahir, Chong Yen Boon, Sunny Jong, Mohd Sharif and Fakhrul Mumini.
For the Old Josephian Category, the top five winners were Tan Jit Ping, Ian Chang, Andy Yeo, Ashari Osman and Henry Au Yang.
The top five finishers in the Student Category for boys were Mohd Nur Iman, Corwin Chu Ng, Masefield Gerry, Ayden Chun and Awang Saiful Hazwan, while Cheryl Lim Woon Yee, Aria Alexis Kuek, Nicole Hon Cai Xuan, Geraldine Rachel and Miriam Rania Lu placed in the top five for the Student Category for girls.
Dr Sim holds aloft an air horn as he prepares to flag off the run on Sunday.
Dr Sim (front, fourth left) and Poh (front, fifth left) join some of the winners and committee members for a photo call.