Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Award Gala Dinner returns in December in bid to end AIDS

The Gala Dinner celebrates individuals and organisations that have made significant contributions in the fight to end AIDS by 2030. — Picture courtesy of Malaysian AIDS Foundation
The Gala Dinner celebrates individuals and organisations that have made significant contributions in the fight to end AIDS by 2030. — Picture courtesy of Malaysian AIDS Foundation

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 31 — The Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Award Gala Dinner is set to return for its second year on December 14 at the Mandarin Oriental Kuala Lumpur, the event’s official hotel partner.

Organised by the Malaysian AIDS Foundation (MAF), the gala dinner is an anticipated evening where the coveted Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Awards will be handed out to individuals or organisations that have contributed significantly in the fight to end AIDS by 2030 while raising funds for the foundation.

The dinner, previously known as the Red Ribbon Gala, will also see MAF presenting the Patron’s Awards to various individuals for their long-standing efforts to end AIDS.

Funds raised from the Gala will be directed to areas such as HIV prevention and education, AIDS care and support for people living with HIV (PLHIV).

The money raised from the evening will go a long way in the foundation’s commitment to end AIDS in Malaysia within a decade, said MAF chairman Prof Datuk Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman in a statement.      

Last year’s Gala Dinner raised RM1.68 million.

“We have come a very long way in the last four decades of the HIV epidemic.

“We now have effective tools to prevent and treat the disease, so much so that there is a global goal to end AIDS by 2030.”

Dr Adeeba added that PLHIV must be diagnosed and undergo treatment as early as possible for them to lead a normal, healthy and productive life.

“Furthermore, a PLHIV receiving effective treatment with a viral load that is undetectable means that they will not transmit the virus,” she said.

In Malaysia, PLHIV are still reluctant to come forward to seek treatment due to the fear of stigma and discrimination even though the government provides free medication.

“The Foundation’s goal is simple. To end AIDS by 2030 as set by The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS),” she said.

According to Dr Adeeba, the upcoming gala dinner will live up to its reputation of the most prestigious fundraiser in the city’s social calendar.

Guests can look forward to haute cuisine fine dining, an orchestra ensemble, live performance by Kris Dayanti and many other exciting surprises.

Winners this year will receive a custom-made designer trophy, an RM20,000 cash prize and a certificate of excellence.

Previous recipients of the award include Limkokwing University of Creative Technology students (1996), Datuk Dr Christopher Lee (1998), Michael Chow (2002), Sister Jubaidah Bee Nagoor Pitchay (2006), PT Foundation (2008) and Matron Fadzilah Abdul Hamid emerged as last year’s winner.

The chairman of the gala dinner organising committee is MAF patron Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir while Malay Mail and Malaysia Tatler are media partners for the event.

Tables for the evening are available in the categories of Diamond (RM50,000), Platinum (RM30,000) and Gold (RM20,000).

For more information, visit here.

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