Connecting worlds at KIND Malaysia
Karen Goi, General Manager of Malaysian International Furniture Fair, Informa Markets, Kuala Lumpur
Over the last couple of years, we have been thinking a lot about how we could ensure our events contributed to society. We noticed that customers from several companies were thinking about the same challenge: they were doing various charitable activities but always contributing to the same organisations and they didn’t know if they could be having a bigger impact with a different partner.We realised that we had a unique opportunity to use our strengths to bring together corporates and NGOs. In October 2018, we opened the first ever KIND Malaysia event providing free exhibition space and exhibiting support to not-for-profits.The idea was to create a space where people can come and discover the right partner for them, whether they were a charity, a business or possible volunteer. We opened the event to the whole market and invited NGOs from the region to apply, being selective on the final 57 NGOs which exhibited in 11 different categories, ranging from supporting children and the elderly to disaster relief, health, women and education.
Giving in kind
What was really amazing was the camaraderie created by the show. Not only did the NGOs contribute their energies to programming seminars across the two days – everyone from our supply partners to government got involved and offered their services or support as well. For example, the venue was donated by our venue partner and our brochure designer offered their services pro bono. What’s more, nearly half of our colleagues in the office volunteered their time. It was a great opportunity for some team members to get experience of being on the event floor. It just goes to show that sometimes the community just needs someone to take the first step.
// “We were thrilled to have Mr Prem Rawat, Global Ambassador of Peace, as our keynote speaker.” //