“A Foundation For Future Generations”
Malaysia’s YTL Foundation builds up communities through education and leadership.
YTL Foundation is the corporate foundation of YTL Group, a family-owned conglomerate in Malaysia that is committed to building value that is not only lasting, but worthy of lasting. Since its inception in 1997, the Foundation remains firm in its belief that education is the basis for the progression of society. Hence, its two main focus areas to empower communities in Malaysia to reach their full potential are education and value-driven leadership.
As a charitable foundation, YTL Foundation’s objectives include rendering financial assistance and scholarship to needy and deserving persons, irrespective of race, religion and creed; founding or managing schools, colleges, universities or other institutions either in Malaysia or elsewhere; organising, executing and supporting schemes for the relief of human suffering; and providing aid to the poor and distress.
In the area of education, YTL Foundation provides financial support to deserving students who demonstrate leadership potential and represent the core values of the Foundation which include hard work, honesty, moral responsibility, togetherness and vitality. These students are carefully selected through the YTL Foundation Scholarship Programme and the Yeoh Tiong Lay Award. Further, the Foundation has also expanded its role to make education accessible for all by creating digital and physical spaces for children from underserved communities in Malaysia, as evidenced by its various initiatives including 54C Learning Space, Learn From Home, Leaps Academy, KelasKITA, and Ruang KITA.
As for its role in promoting value-driven leadership, YTL Foundation helps to create opportunities for high-potential individuals to develop important skills and values through its partnership with Acumen Academy and the establishment of Malaysia Acumen Academy. It also funds selected programmes by Teach For Malaysia and PEMIMPIN GSL in order to ensure its efforts are sustainable.
YTL Foundation has identified two key community impact initiatives to zero in on its overarching mission. The first is Ruang Kita, a safe space for low-income residents in Sentul, Kuala Lumpur to develop their sense of community and belonging. This encompasses access to quality education, nutrition programs, and holistic training for underserved communities living in a low-cost residential area known as PPR Seri Perak. For example, the Foundation led the refurbishment of a local multipurpose hall for residents to share their needs, and for their children in to learn and play.
In 2021, it engaged Toy Libraries Malaysia (TLM) and International Medical University (IMU) to develop the 1000-day nutrition initiative, which was designed to educate low-income parents about the importance of safeguarding the health of pregnant women, postpartum mothers and their children for the first 1000 days of their life. Toy Libraries Malaysia also created the first toy library in Kuala Lumpur that’s located within a PPR, emphasising the value of play-based education for the development of children.
The second key community impact initiative is Leaps Academy, an online after-school programme for underprivileged children including those from low-income and refugee families. Leaps Academy was initially founded in efforts to continue running after-school educational programmes after two community learning centres were forced to shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020. This ensured the underserved children could still learn virtually despite lockdown restrictions.
Given the long-term need for high quality holistic education among these communities, Leaps Academy aims to extend its school holiday programmes and academic learning programmes virtually and on-site in today’s post-pandemic era. In addition, Leaps Academy partners with respected organisations such as Teach For Malaysia to identify children and schools in need of educational support. These partnerships are self-sustaining to ensure children in need continue learning, be it digitally or physically, to help them build a strong foundation for success.