Bandar Seri Begawan - The Charity Expo 2012, launched yesterday by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports with the cooperation of JiDaoGe, a charitable association, saw enormous response not only from members of the public but also the vendors participating in the two-day event.
The expo which served as a platform for vendors and the public to make donations to support the charitable cause saw a total of 86 booths set up by 41 companies. Proceeds from the rentals and donations received at the event will be channelled to charity organisations.
The Charity Expo is held at the Indoor Stadium of the Hassanal Bolkiah Sports Complex in Berakas.
In an interview, one of the vendors, Major (Rtd) Mohd Talip bin Haji Md Tahir, the Vice President II of Smarter Brunei, said, "We are thankful that our organisation has been invited to participate in this charitable cause.
"The expo provides us with the opportunity to promote and sell our products made by our students at the centre.
"At the expo, we are promoting our 'Biskut Tiga Rasa' or Three Flavoured Biscuits which were baked by our autistic students.
"The idea which was inspired by our president is part of the learning process to teach the students to be productive and at the same time to contribute to our association.
"Aside from selling cookies, we are also selling used items such as clothes and other materials which were generously contributed by the parents (of the students).
"By participating in this charitable expo, it opens a door for us to double our efforts in generating our funds and not to depend too much on the government," he said.
Another participant of the Charity Expo is the nongovernmental association, Pusat Ehsan Al-Ameerah Al-Hajjah Maryam.
In an interview, one of the Pusat Ehsan staff expressed her happiness and gratitude for joining the good cause.
"With this kind of charitable expo, we are able to promote and sell the handicrafts and products made by our students.
"It is one way for us to give back to our community and enable us to generate more funds for our centre."
Pusat Ehsan is selling badges, T-shirts, paintings as well as bracelets designed and inspired by the centre's students, she said.
For car enthusiasts, there is a Car Audio Show with the participation of 20 cars taking place at the Indoor Stadium's VIP parking area.
Another highlight were the lucky draws held in three sessions throughout the day with many attractive prizes awaiting the winners.--Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin