People came from all walks of life – women, men, children, single mothers, factory workers, college students – to participate in the “Walk to Stop Sexual Crimes” at Queensbay Seafront on 19 March.
22 NGO collation members of Kempen Rakyat, 100 children from Top Kids Kindergarten, Rumah Sri Cahaya and Crystal home joined the walk.
Many of them were seen carrying placards with slogans like ‘Stop Sexual Crimes’, ‘Keep our children safe’, ‘Kanak-kanak ada hak’. Some of them even came in fancy dresses.
“We are here to make noise that sexual crimes against children must stop now,” shouted Bukit Mertajam MP, Chong Eng, in her speech.
The loud noises made by the participants were amusing. They marched for 1 km, chanting slogans, and with pots, plates and whistles contributing to a ‘rhymatic noise’ that turned into music. 20 kompang players from Persatuan Seni Silat Cekak Malaysia and Indian drummers from Siva Tappu added a nice chorus to the noise.
The walk, in conjunction of International Women’s Day, was flagged off at 6.00pm by Ong Kok Fooi, chairperson of Penang State Committee Women, Family and Community Development and Chong Eng, chairperson of Kempen Rakyat.
The event was jointly organized by the Penang State Women, Family & Community Development, Kempen Rakyat Pulau Pinang and Penang Sports Council in collaboration with the City Council and the police.
Kempen Rakyat Pulau Pinang was launched in October 2010 and has a coalition of over 20 coalition partners aimed to stop sexual crimes against children.
Walkers were given a purple ribbon to signify Women’s Day and a yellow ribbon representing Kempen Rakyat Pulau Pinang.Many were spotted with badges with the Childcare helpline number, 15999
Many NGO booths also seen set up on the field to display and promote their activities and services or to highlight issues. There was also a Children’s Corner, where the children were allowed free hand to create their own placards before the walk.
Balloons were in abundance, given free to children. To ensure that the participant and supporters were not thirsty, there were free Milo and Sunquick drinks available.
After the walk, participants were entertained to a 2 hours Kempen Rakyat Concert. It began to drizzle just after the concert began, which later turned into a heavy rain. However, that did not deter many people when they rushed to the NGO’s booth for shelter and watch the concert from there.
The show ended at 9.00pm with the giving away of prizes for best placards and creative outfit competition, followed by the finale song, ‘We are the World’.
The event was sponsored by Eastin Hotel Penang, Queensbay Mall Management, Nestle, Sunquick and Delta Business Solution.