Community garden among projects planned for Pa Mada

Markus (fourth right) presents a memento as a token of appreciation to Gerawat for officiating at the fundraising dinner, while Robert (second right), Pauline (third left) and others look on.

MIRI: A new community garden will be built in Pa Mada in the Kelabit highlands following a grant from Mulu assemblyman Dato Gerawat Gala.

According to Gerawat, the garden will serve as a place where residents of the 23-door longhouse can plant fruit trees, herbs or vegetables.

“We envisioned it (garden) as a project for the community and by the community. It could also be a great add in the list of attractions for visitors and tourists to visit Pa Mada and its vicinity,” Gerawat, who is also Deputy Speaker of the State Legislative Assembly, said at a recent fundraising dinner here.

He also expressed his confidence the project, along with several others planned for the village, will be a success.

On the dinner, he said the event, themed ‘Know Pa Mada, Love Pa Mada’, was aimed at promoting Pa Mada to the younger generation and friends alike, and can serve as an example for other villages in his constituency to follow.

“It is very important for us as parents to make sure that our children are being given the opportunity to go back to the village as often as they can so that they can have some connection.

“It is vital for our younger generation to get accustomed to their village so they can fall in love with it and not forget their roots,” he explained.

Gerawat mentioned that Pa Mada is a really special village as it has shaped many influential people and pastors in particular.

At the event, he announced an allocation of RM75,000 to build a concrete drain behind the longhouse. The project is to start before the end of this year.

He also pledged his commitment to seek funding to help repair the longhouse in Pa Mada, including getting new roofing.

Also present at the event were Sarawak Public Service Commission member Datu Robert Lian and Rurum Kelabit Sarawak president Dr Philip Raja, event advisors Markus Gatuman and Mutang Paturan, and organising chairlady Pauline Ulit Raja.