PETALING JAYA: Malaysians are a very generous lot, and they proved it yet again with an outpouring of help for the flood victims in the east coast states. The response to the The Star-MRCS-Firefly Relief Fund has been so overwhelming that it exceeded the airline's daily cargo capacity to fly the goods to Kota Baru and Kuala Terengganu.
Firefly chief executive officer Ignatius Ong said that to date, 73,000kg of dry food, personal care and medical supplies had been delivered to the two cities where representatives from IMAM Response and Relief Team (Imaret) - a team powered by the Islamic Medical Association of Malaysia (Imam), Mercy Malaysia and TUDM Oscar were collecting and distributing items to the various flood relief centres.
"Our call for solidarity and donation resulted in an outpouring of support from all quarters. In fact, the donation exceeded our daily cargo capacity although we have a minimum of 10 daily flights to Kota Baru and five to Kuala Terengganu out of Subang Skypark," said Ong.
"We were very fortunate to be able to call on our friends from Malaysia Airlines, MASKargo and TUDM Oscar to assist with the air and ground logistics to ensure that all donations are sent to the east coast as soon as possible. We thank them for their swift response - it was a matter of minutes of discussion before we had an agreement to work together and the various assets were mobilised immediately," he added.
The airline has also flown 335 medical practitioners from the Health Ministry and Imaret to the east coast to provide medical services and assistance.
Ong said over 200 volunteers from among the Firefly management and staff, non-governmental organisations and the public had been working at the three donation centres - Subang Skypark Terminal, Penang International Airport and Sultan Ismail Petra Airport in Kota Baru.
"We are amazed and humbled by the compassion and generosity shown and will continue to provide our services as long as it takes. We are honoured to be part of the chain," he added.
Donors are reminded to ensure items are packed properly in boxes, sealed and labelled before dropping them off at any of the three donation centres.