Koggelavani Muniandy

Having worked as an engineer for five years, Koggelavani Muniandy found no fulfilment in her job. After a year of soul-searching, Koggelavani discovered she had a knack for teaching while tutoring children from various shelter homes. With a desire to continue educating and helping children, she reached out to her uncle, Balasubramaniam Somasundram, and cousin, Naaraayini Balasubramaniam, both of whom were regular volunteers.

In 2016, the trio launched GoodKids Malaysia, a social enterprise transforming the lives of underprivileged youth through counselling and the arts. Koggelavani is the organisation’s director. The trio makes a dynamic and unique team with a mixed bag of expertise; Balasubramaniam is a counselling psychologist with over 30 years of experience, Naaraayini, a singer and musician, who also holds a Diploma in Psychology and Koggelavani, a passionate educator and teacher.

In 2021, GoodKids launched ‘Apa Pandang-Pandang’, a project to capture the expressions of B40 children who were disconnected from the ‘world’ due to a lack of digital access during the pandemic. There is also ‘GoodKids League’ an annual performing arts competition where students are trained to tell their stories using drum buckets and instruments made from recycled materials. A similar initiative called ‘When Bells Meet Buckets’ is a dance rendition where students perform the Bharatanatyam dance to bucket drum beats. The performance tells stories of children growing up in the B40 communities and the struggles they face.

Aside from the arts, GoodKids Academy provides mental health awareness, emotional management, and coping skills for students from various backgrounds to learn how to deal with the challenges they are facing. Over the span of 6 years, GoodKids Malaysia has impacted over 800 youth from the B40 community.

To know that the work that I do speaks for itself in years to come, without me being there to explain. The students we work with will be the future ambassadors championing mental health awareness!

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