For our second Lunch and Learn session on 23 September 2016, we wanted to focus on creative arts, and a movement that really caught our attention was The Rojak Projek. There was so much negativity in Malaysia after the MH370 incident, that the founders of The Rojak Projek wanted to do something about it. They wanted to change the world’s perception that “Aiya Malaysia got no hope lah” into “Eh, Malaysia got a lot of potential okay?”

In their journey towards creating a better Malaysia, they knew that Malaysians are united by their love of food. As such, they threw a Rojak party, and invited all their friends. Even though everyone was united by friendship, it was quite evident that everyone was as different and diverse as Malaysia as a nation. Malaysians are made up of people that have different skin colour, race, religion, culture and tradition. Instead of trying to achieve unity by being a colour blind nation, the Rojak team wanted to embrace all those vibrant colours, diversity and culture. They took the black and white portraits of all their friends and turned it into something colourful, using Malaysian food!

Think Nasi Lemak, Roti Canai, Nasi Kerabu and Pulut Tai Tai, all these mouth-watering Malaysian foods were used on 60 portraits and the final results were stunning! This marked the end of their Phase 1 “Vision for Malaysia” where we Malaysians embrace the beauty in variety of Malaysian food, and also our diversity.

During the FAQ session, it was funny when one of our Uppercase members asked what happens to the food used on the portraits. To that, Faye immediately responded “Eat it lah!” Truly, we Malaysians love our food, especially in the company of like-minded people. There is so much more about Malaysia to discover, as Faye and the other founder Rachel Lee pointed out. 60 different foods used on 60 portraits, and there is still so much more food in the different states that have not been discovered yet. Even a simple kuih can be done in so many different ways in different states. That is the beauty of our diversity.

As the Rojak team continue their journey into Phase 2 “Rediscovering Each Other”, where they will be travelling through the 13 states to collect Malaysian stories, and also get more Malaysians to be featured in their portraits, we at Uppercase cannot wait to see what comes out of it. This is Malaysia, truly, united by our love of food.

mday1 mday4 mday6 mday5

On 15th September, Uppercase celebrated Malaysia Day by inviting our community members and partners to showcase their amazing projects or initiatives to the public to gain more exposure and build strong networks among like-minded community and organisations. This day created a great opportunity for Uppercase to become a platform for potential future communities to connect and collaborate with the existing communities.

We were very happy to receive major support from our partners such as Teach for Malaysia, Creative Mornings, The Techy Hub and Platform 80. The Techy Hub, co-founded by Soon Seng and Henry Lee took the opportunity to introduce their new sister company called “Inkredible” and it gained much interest from all audience. Platform 80 also got to present their findings of the 3 weeks open solutions workshop that was held in Uppercase and it managed to create awareness regarding design solutions to the public.

Soon Wei, Uppercase’s Managing Partner kicked off the session by sharing his story to building this co-working space. He explained the Uppercase core values and vision of Uppercase where we aimed to be a collaborative workspace that create, connect and collaborate.

We also threw in a best room decor based on the Malaysia Day theme to add some fun to the event. We were honored to gain support from Ms. Joan Lau (Managing Editor for The Malay Mail Online) and Dr. Ong Kian Ming (CEO for Penang Institute) to be the judges for the event. FTalent won the first prize by having Razif Hashim to dress up as Tunku Abdul Rahman, and even served a ‘Merdeka Mocktail’ to the people that visited their room, all in the name of good fun and spreading the Malaysia Day cheer! The second and third prizes were won by POW Ideas and HC Event Management but everyone else had great fun decorating their rooms.

We had tons of fun for Malaysia Day and we are inspired to build a better Malaysia together with our community members!