About Yayasan Hasanah

As a convenor, collaborator, and catalyst of change, Hasanah focuses on the country’s pressing community and social issues, bringing together policymakers, civil society organisations, corporations, and local communities to enable collective impact for the people and environment.

We strive to create real and lasting positive social and environmental changes for Malaysia through our work in the following focus areas: Education; Community Development; Environment; Arts & Public Spaces and Knowledge.

One of our recipients of the Hasanah Arts Fund, Pyu is a 5 year old master puppeteer whose dream is to follow in his dad’s footsteps in the Wayang Kulit scene.

Managing Director’s Reflection

Shahira Ahmed Bazari shares her reflection for 2019 and an overview of the initiatives, partnerships and achievements for the year.

Managing Director’s Reflection

As I pen this, the nation is under its second wave of the Movement Control Order (MCO) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. It dawns upon me that it is during uncertain, unprecedented times such as these that extraordinary actions, stewardship and support are most crucial to weather the storm.

Vulnerable communities will need assistance the most and we are doing everything we can to enable rapid mobilisation and ensure help gets out fast. In doing so, we are grateful to our partners and various civil society organisations who are carrying these efforts, despite the trying circumstances of the Movement Control Order (MCO) and beyond.

As an impact-based, grant-making foundation operating in the realm of non-profits, we are constantly challenged to evolve and adapt, responding to the intricacies of the present moment. This sometimes means growing rapidly or treading unchartered waters and while it is a test in relevance, sustainability and endurance, therein too lies Hasanah’s strength.

Truly, we owe our growth to the highly capable people who I have the privilege and pleasure of calling my board of trustees, my team and our partners and stakeholders who carry the torch and relentlessly champion our cause. I say this often — “team work makes the dream work” — and the strategic partnerships we embark upon are built on this principle of trust and collaboration.

The Power of ‘We’ 

The wonderful Helen Keller once said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” And that is the crux of what we strive for every day at Hasanah — bringing together various and varied partners who on their own are doing good work but collectively are doing even greater. 

This is not to say that small initiatives do not matter but if we can pool together many small things then maybe we can achieve more — save larger sections of the Central Forest Spine (CFS), empower more women, render art mainstream, and close the gap between rural and urban schools, just to name a few. The possibilities are endless. Hasanah will continue to build bridges, connect the dots, pull like-minded people, institutions and civil society together towards a common vision of building a better and stronger Malaysia. 

In the pages of this annual report, you will learn about a wide range of programmes that kept all of us at Hasanah — as they did our partners — on our toes all through 2019. None of the initiatives would have been possible without not only unyielding support and commitment but also the synergy between various parties. Hence, as much as this is a report, it is also a means of honouring the efforts of the 37 organisations and 45 Hasanah-supported projects in 2019, across Malaysia.

A Sneak Peek into THR 19

When Hasanah was born in July of 2015, our mission and mandate formed part of Khazanah’s overall contribution in nation building and in the four years that followed, we have been focused on driving sustainable social progress in five key areas.

2019 saw the Education pillar continue to push for access to quality education under the flagship Trust School Programme (TSP or Sekolah Amanah) – a comprehensive five-year public school transformation programme since 2010’. In addition to the scholarships offered by Yayasan Khazanah to students with outstanding academic achievement, Hasanah supported at-risk youth in gaining jobs and certification via partners such as MySkills Foundation. With Industry 4.0 currently being of great interest, Chumbaka Sdn Bhd’s 21st century digital skill training involved teachers of secondary schools throughout Perlis who went on to expose their students to the same. Do read more about this under our Education section of the report. 

Under the Community Development focus area, the goal is to better livelihoods using a community-based approach, ultimately allowing beneficiaries to lead more dignified and independent lives. One partner, PACOS Trust, has a presence in Sabah’s Pegalungan Nabawan, located deep within the Land Below the Wind. The programme involves up-skilling the womenfolk in organic farming, crafts and eco-tourism. Meanwhile, organisations such as OrphanCare and Child Rights Coalition in Malaysia advocate child rights and protection. For the second time around, Women of Will granted microloans coupled with entrepreneurial training for business women living in PPR Lembah Subang and you will find some of their inspiring stories in the Community Development section.

The Environment pillar has persevered in sowing the seeds of awareness with regard to the grossly under-appreciated Central Forest Spine (CFS), the provider of invaluable ecosystem services. 2019 was all about getting the message across loud and clear, in furtherance of the Herculean task of connecting fragmented segments of the forest. Efforts included a documentary by Nuvista Media Sdn Bhd advocating the protection of the CFS before it is too late, the Global Environment Centre’s leveraging of local communities for stewardship of rivers and the inaugural Roots & Shoots Malaysia Award targeting youth, together with Dame Dr. Jane Goodall.

As for the Arts and Public Spaces pillar, endeavours to protect art and national heritage included attempts to revive the nation’s priceless audio-visuals that have lay dormant in archives for too long now. The project has brought the medium of moving images that much closer to being recognised as a national heritage and part of UNESCO listing. In 2019, we also completed documenting traditional kuih recipes from the East Coast in partnership with FriedChillies. 

Last but certainly not least, the Knowledge pillar — the stepping stone to policy-making and evidence-based intervention  — has been busy organising various capacity building sessions and supporting partners such as Khazanah Research Institute on its long list of knowledge sharing sessions and panel discussions as well as papers and publications. Read more about this in the Knowledge section of this report. One of our partners, Think City continues its efforts in urban regeneration through projects such as the Butterworth Digital Library as well as Placemaker Week ASEAN 2019, the first ever regional conference of its kind, alongside various social-impact programmes.

As you may know, the Arabic word ‘Hasanah’ can be interpreted to mean a good deed, well-being, kindness and benevolence and indeed there is no time like the present for Malaysians to come together in appreciation and celebration of this ‘Hasanah’ within all of us.

With that, I welcome you to The Hasanah Report 2019.

Our Strategic Levers of Impact

In achieving long-term social impact, three key strategic drivers have been identified. Each are measurable and able to improve the quality of life of individuals, communities and society as a whole. Hasanah terms the three strategic levers of impact as Increase, Innovate and Influence.

Increasingly, we have seen Hasanah’s programmes driving scale, investing in new and improved methodologies and involved in advocacy and influencing of policies and structures for the long-term.


Scaling up and deepening reach, engagements and programmes across all focus areas.


Developing new, innovative and improved approaches (content) and sustainable solutions to pressing social and environmental issues.


Advocating and shaping policies to achieve structural changes and systems reform in our focus areas.

Yayasan Hasanah Projects
Throughout Malaysia in 2019


2015 – Up To Date


Our Impact In 2019


Conservation Areas

Knowledge &
Advocacy Policy

(or choose a focus area below)


Community Development


Arts & Public Spaces


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