26 November 2008

A Pledge For Hope For A Violence-Free World

November 25 was declared as “The White Ribbon International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women” by the United Nations. For the first time in Malaysia, computing students of Sunway University College developed the pledge module on the www.journeytowardshope.com website to enable Malaysians to make a personal pledge from 10 am on November 25. This event was also held around the world particularly in Australia and the U.S.A

During the period surrounding this date men and boys especially, are encouraged to undertake the White Ribbon pledge “not to commit, condone or remain silent on violence against women and children”. This event is an initiative of Dr Valli Batchelor (a Malaysian residing in Australia). A similar pledge which was pioneered in Perth by Dr Batchelor last year was highly commended internationally.

The aim of this event is to raise awareness for the U.N White Ribbon campaign and to create safer and sacred places for all Malaysians of diverse culture, religion, gender and ages to celebrate lives free from violence.

A paper pledge can also be done by filling in a palm paper pledge, e-copies of which are also available from Christopher Ong (016-2061580). The palm paper pledges will be collected from now to be displayed on a “tree” for 16 days of activism for elimination of violence against women and children, at Sunway University College from November 25.

Sunway students were asked what they thought of the pledge. Kevin Zachary, a first year computing student said “This is a very good initiative. Violence should be stopped and it is great that this awareness is created at the level of students”. Kumaran A/L Reventhran, also a first year computing student said, “I hope more people will come forward to pledge and more people should be made aware of violence particularly domestic violence which can go unnoticed”

This project is presented by Sunway University College in association with Journey Towards hope Dance Projects, Australia, World Council of Churches and the Guru Dharma Society.