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Cindy Leong nee Tung Sau Ping

Cindy Leong grew up having a deaf sister. In her household, the Deaf community are welcomed with a warm embrace, slowly planting the seeds in her to help the community from a young age.

Her more than 36 years of commitment to the Deaf community started with her involvement as a volunteer sign language instructor for the deaf with the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) Deaf Club in Brickfields, Kuala Lumpur in the 1970s and later as a teaching staff at Selangor School for the Deaf (SSD). After being sent to train in Manila, Philippines, Cindy was appointed as the principal of SSD.

Despite most of her time being drawn towards attending school matters, she remained active in volunteering for causes close to her. Cindy was also the pioneering group that expanded sign language in Malaysia and had a short stint as a sign language interpreter for the Berita Ringkas on Selamat Pagi Malaysia over RTM on Fridays and Sundays in the 1980s.

However, Cindy’s heart is set on educating the Deaf community. In 1990, she founded The Society of Interpreters for the Deaf (SID). Soon it grew into a Community Service Centre for the Deaf in 1995, providing education and training for the community and it blossomed into a project where graduates run Silent Teddies bakery for a living. Over 100 bakers have been trained under its roof since its exception.

As an extension of the great work done by SID, Silent Teddies bakery was accredited as a social enterprise providing skill training and work in the F&B sector in 2017. The bakery won the MaGIC Amplify Awards in 2016.

Cindy was also nominated and selected by Royal Safety Marshal Club (RSMC) as a recipient of the Iron Lady Award 2019.

Impact for me means being a vehicle for changing the lives of Deaf persons, by providing them with skill training as well as providing them meaningful work in the food and beverage industry.

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