A site visit organized by the Sarawak Heritage Society
When : Sunday 6 September 2015, 9am to 12pm Where : Rajah Charles Brooke Memorial Hospital, ’13th Mile’, Jalan Borneo Heights, past Semenggoh Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre. Who: for SHS members – members can bring along friends and family.
The visit will be conducted in English.
Free of charge for all.
To ensure a place please email firstname.lastname@example.org to register not later than Thursday 3 September.
The RCBM lies at the outskirts of Kuching’s fast-expanding urban sprawl. But over 75 years ago, when founded as the site of the third and final leprosy settlement in Sarawak, it was in deep jungle. It has housed patients right up to the present day. The site is a testimony to many decades of occupation by this community, where they built residential blocks, places to gather and places to worship. Over the years, the community collected meticulous records and numerous objects that document their lives in this place, including photos, certificates and medical equipment, as well as a wide range of handicrafts made by the patients themselves. The doctors and staff at the hospital, today serving a wide range of patients, have been tasked with conserving the property and the collection and, to this end, have compiled a book for publication at the end of the year in conjunction with a visit by the Sarawak Chief Minister.
Speakers : Dr Goh Yi Xiong and Angelina Jong
Dr Goh Yi Xiong is the Director of Rajah Charles Brooke Memorial Hospital. Originally from KL but settled in Kuching for the past two years, he has become highly engaged with Sarawak and the history of RCBM.
Angelina Jong is the Head of the Physiotherapy Unit at RCBM. She has come to be in charge of the objects at the ‘mini-museum’ at the hospital through a series of strange coincidences but it has sparked a genuine passion in her to research the history of the settlement and create the upcoming book.
Want to read more on the Hospital? Have A look at the following 2010 article by an expatriate who spent 6 months teaching English t0 to the RCMB community (in Engllish, on a Japanese website) .
And, on the history of leprosy management in Malaysia, this page of the website The Way Home, an online museum project documenting the history associated to the Sungai Buloh leprosy community (Selangor, Malaysia). Times have changed…