Our Stories

“I am different, not less”

– Temple Grandin –

“Nama saya Jennifer Ooi Phaik Hoon. Saya tinggal di Pantai Hill Park dekat Bangsar. Saya gembira dan suka bekerja di UV. Saya pergi kerja dengan kereta mak saya. Saya kerja di UV untuk dapat duit. Saya dapat ramai kawan.  Saya buat kad. Saya suka buat kad.”

Jennifer Ooi Phaik Hoon

“I work in Klinik Loh. I am receptionist. I did my work. I take a card and chop the date. I write the telephone number, name, IC, age. I work every Monday , Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. They have many patients in the clinic. There are a lot of people. I break the blood test needles every morning and carry the box of medicine to the store room. I like my job because I like to work.

I joined UV in 2005. I like UV because I have a lot of friends. We talk to one another. I enjoy UV activities. We play games, we go for dinner, outings and we have general and committee meeting. We talk and  discuss during meetings. Some of my friends in UV are Christina, Esther, Johari, Aslam and Wendy.

My family have 2 girls. My sister’s name is Anna Priscilla. My father’s name is Thomas Raju. My mother’s name is Lourdesmary. I have dog. Her name is Celine. We live in Petaling Jaya. I love my parents so much because they all take care of me. My sister works in Walton International Group in Kuala Lumpur.”

Cynthia Thomas

“My Journey….

 “I come from Penang.  I have had Cerebral Palsy ever since I was an infant which means I have been suffering from this disease for 24 years.  My left hand and leg are deformed and my eye vision is also very poor due to my disease. In the eyes of most people, they think I am normal. I also think I can advance, only, I am slow.

I have worked for two or three years before but I couldn’t continue to work because the employers didn’t accept me. I have changed many jobs in the period. Was it because I learn things very slow?  Was it because I don’t know how to communicate with others?  If yes, then should employers understand me and continue to employ me?

I have worked in factories and offices. But in 3 years I changed 7 jobs. After experiencing many hardships, I went to PLPP (Industrial Training and Recovery Center) to study IT – computer courses.  After studying at PLPP, a Beautiful Gate staff got my job at Spraying Systems (M) Sdn Bhd.  I have been working here for 7 years.  I feel comfortable and relax working here because employers and co-workers understand and accept me. They are patient to teach me. I hope my voice will awake people to accept disabled people and give them opportunity to learn and work

I became a UV member since August 2004. I am accepted by UV staff, members and parents.  UV gives me confidence to voice and share about myself.  I have the opportunity to know other organizations through United Voice programs and activities and we learn to express our opinion on the problem of learning disabilities.  Now I’m married and I make my own decisions, and I get support to achieve my results and dreams. I learn to plan my next action, I think positive and I know what I want too!  Above all, I thank God for seeing me through these years.”

Teoh Hooi Ting

“I was born in Dec 14, 1979, although I was very active I only started talking when I was 5. Had my early education in UK, while my father was doing his PHD there and have good memories of school life there. When I was 12, a psychiatrist diagnosed that I am a slow learner, suffering from dyscalculia – difficulties in maths and slow in learning. I was then sent to a Special School.

At 18, I attended vocational training at a centre for persons with learning disabilities.

My first working experience was at Yommie Bake in 1998. I started making cakes and decorating the cakes using a projector on top of the cake drawing cartoon characters such as Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Hello Kitty. I had also worked in fast-food restaurants. Since 2004, I had started working in an accounttng firm as a receptionist admin assistant. My working life has helped me become more independent, mature and wise.

I became a UV member in 2001. When I first joined the meetings I didn’t know anything and I didn’t know how to voice up. But, by 2002 finally I began to voice up. UV has motivated me all these years to self-advocate. UV gives me the confidence to speak up and share personal stories.”

Johari Bin Jamali

“Hi! My name is Pavala and I am a slow learner. When I was small I cannot walk and talk. At 3 years old I went for operation and after that I can walk. The doctors at UKM helped me a lot and now I can live ok.

I went to many schools and in 1997 I joined Kiwanis Job Training Center in Bandar Sri Damansara. I also went to St Paul Day Training Centre and Girls Guide. I worked in many places like PERKOBP, MailNetwork, part-time in Hudsons Biscuit Factory and was a volunteer in PKIK. I also worked in United Voice EP and Masterpiece before joining PKIK Worklink.

I thank Miss Revathy my tuition teacher and all my supporting friends from Malaysian CARE, Perkobp, Miss Annam, Cikgu Judy, Uncle Sam and Felicia’s mother from St Paul’s and every one else who helped me.

I wish United Voice “Good luck” and “God Bless” and hope all my friends will join as members.”

Pavala Vaani A/P PalaKrishnan

“Saya dilahirkan pada 3 September 1991. Pada usia 3 tahun, saya telah disahkan menghidap epilepsi sehingga berusia 12 tahun. Saya bersekolah sehingga Tingkatan 6. Saya berasa amat gembira kerana saya berjaya lulus di dalam peperiksaan UPSR dan SPM walaupun saya mengalami epilepsi. Tetapi gagal peperiksaan STPM.

Malangnya pada tahun 2007 saya telah didiagnosis dengan Germinoma Supraseller (tumor otak). Saya menjalani rawatan Kemoterapi dan Radioterapi. Tumor itu dapat dirawat tetapi sedihnya saya menjadi lambat dalam pergerakan, ingatan menjadi lemah dan menghadapi masalah pembelajaran. Selepas sekolah saya bekerja di beberapa syarikat tetapi saya tidak dapat menampung beban kerja disebabkan ketidakupayaan saya.

Pada tahun November 2014 saya menjadi ahli United Voice (UV). Saya menghadiri kelas Social Skills Training, di mana saya belajar memotivasikan diri, menyuarakan diri dan advokasi diri. Saya juga belajar untuk menyuarakan pendapat semasa mesyuarat. Saya menjadi lebih berdikari. Sebagai contoh, saya dapat pergi ke tempat kerja dengan menggunakan pengangkutan awam.

Saya diberi peluang untuk bekerja sebagai pembantu pejabat di UV pada Januari 2015. Saya juga ikuti lawatan sambil belajar ke ACS, Pulau Pinang bersama kakitangan UV di mana saya belajar untuk membuat tenunan Saori, mencanting batik dan melakukan proses pembuatan kertas. Saya mengambil bahagian di dalam Majlis Makan Malam Ulang Tahun ke-10 United Voice di dalam pertunjukkan ‘Glow In The Dark’. Saya ada peluang menyertai Persidangan ASEAN Disability Forum pada Oktober 2015 dan Bengkel tentang AKTA OKU dan UNCRPD 2016 dimana saya belajar tentang hak OKU. Saya juga adalah DET trainer untuk staf Air Asia. Saya beritahu mereka bagaimana menyokong OKU Masalah Pembelajaran. Saya juga terlibat dalam latihan ‘Peer Mediation’ di UV. Saya belajar menjadi Peer Mediator kepada ahli-ahli UV.

Melalui advokasi diri saya belajar bagaimana untuk bersuara, membuat keputusan, mengetahui hak dan tanggungjawab, menyelesaikan masalah, mendengar dan belajar meminta sokongan apabila kita memerlukan bantuan dan persahabatan dan belajar tentang mencorakkan masa hadapan sendiri dengan bimbingan penyokong. Sekarang saya lebih keyakinan diri, lebih berani berucap di depan orang lain.”

Lee May Yoong