It is common for most people to be thinking of taking a break or planning a holiday at the end of the year, but not for the Good Shepherd cookie-baking volunteers. Every year-end, a group of ladies in Ipoh will come together for some serious work of producing high quality cookies for sale. The Just So Good cookies are baked before Christmas and Chinese New Year, and the proceeds from the sale go towards Good Shepherd projects which help empower marginalised women and children. “It is tiring work as we are on our feet most of the time, but we all know that this is for something good,” said volunteer Lilian Reutens. Long-serving volunteer Rosaline Phang considers her effort as part of the Good Shepherd mission as the money goes towards the social programmes by Good Shepherd Services. Theresa Lau agreed and added that she derives great joy in serving. So, between November 2016 and January 2017, the ladies will be spending around seven weeks at the Rose Virginie Good Shepherd Centre baking their renowned cookies. Clearly, these ladies take great pride in their work, and appreciate the praises heaped on them for their cookies. “We are very serious about it and we cannot make any mistake along the way. A small difference in the weight can result in the cookies not fitting into our containers,” said volunteer Susan Koh. But there is a bigger element that binds these volunteers together, and helps them through the grueling task of baking from 9.30am to 5pm every weekday for seven weeks. Seated left to right: Rosaline Phang, Susan Koh, Lilian Reutens, Mary Therese Auyong. Standing left to right: Theresa Lau, Helen Leong The ladies enjoy the community and friendship that are built through this common goal of service. “We may be serious when it comes to baking, but we joke and laugh with each other,” said Helen Leong. And 83-year old Mary Therese Auyong can only say how grateful she is to be part of this charitable and supportive community. If you are keen to join Good Shepherd Services as a volunteer, please click the following link. http://goodshepherd.my/volunteer-time If you wish to get your hands on these famous handmade freshly-baked cookies, click on the following link for the order form. Last date for Christmas orders is December 2, 2016 while orders for Chinese New Year cookies end on January 2, 2017.