Wednesday, January 11, 2012



I first visited the AUTORR centre in February 2009 after reading about it in The Star. Now three years down the road, what is the latest progress on Asia's first rest and recreation centre for senior citizens?

Lin Chua (Photo: AUTORR)
A small group of us decided to make a trip there yesterday to see for ourselves. We were given a guided tour by the ever so gracious and humble Lin Chua (Yap Swee Lin), founder and chairman of the AUTORR foundation. This grand-daughter of Malaysia's last kapitan, Kapitan Yap Kwan Seng, donated four acres of prime land in Ampang to build a centre where senior citizens could come and enjoy activities specially planned for them.

AUTORR's pamphlets now carry the new logo of a pentagon representing the five elements of feng shui: metal, water, wood, fire and earth that together symbolizes balance, harmony and success in life.

What inspired this bold vision to build the Rm8m AUTORR centre?

Explains Lin, "With their children all busy with work, old folks are often left at home with nothing much to do except watch television. They feel lonely, neglected and unappreciated. This centre provides an opportunity for them to come together during the day to enjoy activities with their peers.

One of the lecture halls. Once furnished and equipped, it can be rented out for seminars and other functions.
A classroom where the elderly can learn arts and crafts and other skills.

Some of these activities include workshops and classes where the elderly can pick up new skills and knowledge. Or they can choose to simply relax and enjoy the company of their friends.

We will also be inviting young people, including orphans, to visit and spend time with the elderly here. One of our objectives is to work towards bridging the gap between the two generations by encouraging core values like filial piety and respect for the elderly."

As Lin showed us around the different buildings, I could see the many changes that have taken place since my last visit, from the beautiful landscaping of the grounds to the tasteful furnishing of the centre.

For the many friends who have been enquiring about AUTORR, and for all the kind people who have donated towards making the AUTORR centre a reality, here is a pictorial account of the centre as of 10 January 2012.

At Happy Cafe, visitors can enjoy a cup of tea as well as a panoramic view of the hills surrounding the centre.
The kitchen - equipped at a cost of RM50k, thanks to generous donors.
A cosy tea corner. The wooden benches made by the orang asli (natives) are donated. Many benches like these line the corriders providing a place for the elderly to sit and rest their feet.
The reception area.
Volunteer Tracy Wan helps to run the air-conditioned office. Note the use of the stand fan. The volunteer staff know they have to work under tight budget constraints.
The meditation cave where the elderly can retreat to for some quiet moments and solitude.
Whether it's the willows, water fountains or little figurines dotting the garden, it's all about generating serenity and positive qi. The care given to details to ensure comfort and safety truly reflects the depth and breadth of Lin's concern and love for the elderly. There are ramps everywhere for easy wheelchair access, and more than 45 toilets for the convenience of the elderly.

Top: The Lotus Lodge provides accommodation for invited guest speakers. Above: the living cum dining room at the lodge. Every single piece of furniture here, and elsewhere in the centre, is either donated or sponsored.

Top: The centrepiece of AUTORR. The silver and golden pillars (not in photo) outside the hall symbolize the elderly enjoying their golden years. Above: The cavenous hall. AUTORR is hoping for generous donors to sponsor the construction of a movable stage.

The Year of the Dragon will see the opening of the AUTORR centre to senior citizens in the Klang Valley. Once in operation, the centre will accept registration from senior citizens irrespective of their age, race or religious background. Do note, however, that AUTORR is not a daycare centre.

In the meantime, the AUTORR foundation is continuing with its efforts to raise funds for various projects. Top on the list of priorities is the urgent need to clear the clump of trees adjoining the main entrance to make way for a much-needed car park for visitors. Any volunteers or sponsors for this?

For those wishing to donate money or items, please contact Faith Lum for more details at +603 4295 2261. Email address : Website:

Crossed cheques should be made payable to: AUTORR FOUNDATION. For direct credit, it's AUTORR FOUNDATION, CIMB Bank A/C No. 1427-0007982-05-8. All donations are tax-exempted.

As evident from the photos above, every ringgit donated is accounted for and put to good use. AUTORR practises strict accountability and transparency. Let us give whatever we can, whether it's our time, energy or money, to such a noble and deserving cause as AUTORR.

Click on the link below to view more photos of AUTORR.


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