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KUALA LUMPUR: The Genius Remaja programme under the Ministry of Education plays an active role in the development of teenagers from the B40 group to ensure that they are not exposed to risky activities, as well as aiming to improve their skills in certain fields.

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia’s Social Sciences and Humanities Faculty’s Pusat Pemerkasaan Remaja (Perkasa) head Dr Nasrudin Subhi said that the programme, established in 2010, provides skills classes to teenagers aged between 13 and 19.

To date more than 6,000 teenagers have participated in the classes as a part of efforts to prevent them from getting involved in a negative environment.

“Hence, we fill their weekend by providing skills classes and other beneficial activities in line with the interests of today’s teenagers.”

Nasrudin said that thus far Genius Remaja community centres have been established in four housing areas, namely PPR Seri Pantai, PPR Pantai Ria, Desa Public Housing Rejang and PPR Kg Muhibah.

Through the programme, various skills classes have been introduced for the target group including classes in baking and pastry; vocals and music and photography as well as button badges assisted by professional facilitators.

In addition to skills classes, Genius Remaja also offers classes in Quran and ‘fardhu ain’; tuition and reading, which are held in the afternoon from Monday to Friday.

To make it even more interesting, 11 Genius Remaja alumni who are skilled in their respective fields have been appointed as teaching staff to help more teenagers to attend the classes.

“Having acquired the skills in Genius Remaja, some continue their studies at a higher level such as at Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) and there are also participants who choose to become entrepreneurs armed with the skills acquired,” he said.

Nasrudin said that the skills classes not only train and provide activities for teenagers but also serve as the best medium to increase positive values such as discipline, identity, respect and communication skills.

He also said that despite the country still being in the fight against Covid-19, this does not hinder students from gaining knowledge online.

“When some of them face internet and data problems, we always try to find a solution.

“For example, we organised a competition and if participants win, they will be rewarded with a prepaid card to enable them to use data,” he said.

Genius Remaja, created in 2010, is one of seven initiatives under the Genius programme which include Genius Negara; Genius @ Pintar; Genius Insan; Genius Seni; Genius Kurnia and Genius Talent.-Bernama