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Final March to a Million

By Mei Kuan

Spearheaded by Perak Women for Women Society (PWW) in collaboration with Soroptimist International (SI Ipoh), the peace-filled community project to end all forms of violence, One Million Stars To End Violence is quickly approaching its target of one million woven stars.


Siew Keen & Sumathi

Launched in November 2017, it has created about 890,000 stars to date, all made of recyclable materials. Thus, join them by weaving the 100,000-odd more stars and sending it in by October 31 or even earlier!

The stars symbolise light, courage and solidarity to end violence of all forms.

“This is a community message. There are a lot of people who are anti-violence but to take it on your own, it’s difficult. As a community, we know that we have actually spread that message seeing from the support that we have received. When you see the volume of stars and the different categories of people who have contributed, you know the community supports anti-violence,” Sumathi Sivamany, President of PWW told Ipoh Echo on Tuesday, August 6.

“For us, it’s very clear, we are saying no to violence. What better way to send the message than working with something which everyone can contribute to? It could be young children weaving the stars with their parents or old folks cutting strips. They are able to be a part of this major message. There are many silent helpers and unknown faces who believe in and contribute to our cause,” Sumathi enthused.

“The many stars are in the midst to be installed and displayed all over town in stages. For instance, in a gallery above the PWW Shop are the art pieces made from the stars, curated by UiTM Seri Iskandar architectural students. Plus, Sunway College is coming up with a star structure. Eric Lai, a local mural artist, started painting the symbolic, multi-coloured stars all over the pillars of the PWW Shop lot since yesterday. One Million Stars is a platform to reach out and stand in solidarity against violence and promote peace,” Yip Siew Keen, Co-founder of PWW explained.

The community, academic institutions and corporations can lend a helping hand by providing monetary donations, a public space to put up the display or volunteers to help hang up the stars.


Explaning the cause to passing tourists

“Once a million stars are achieved, we will celebrate with the community during the Car Free Day complete with a Women’s March to be led by Raja Permaisuri Perak, Tuanku Zara Salim this coming November. There will be a lot of activities in the planning. It is also in conjunction with the United Nations’ 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence Campaign which runs from 25 November annually,” Yip added.

“One Million Stars was a project initiated in Australia. Australia took seven years to reach its million stars target while our community is taking just two years, which is no mean feat. It is a Malaysian project, with the bulk of the stars coming from Perak. Besides that, we have received stars from as far as the United States and Australia. One million stars is a massive figure with an equally strong message by volunteers and sponsors, therefore, we’d like to get into the Malaysia Book of Records once we have enough funds,” she highlighted.

Interested readers who would like to join the effort can visit the project’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/1MillionStars/ or drop by the PWW Shop located at 15, Market Street (next door to Market Place Waffle Café).

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Tan Mei Kuan

Tan Mei Kuan graduated with first-class honours and book prize from University of Malaya majoring in languages and linguistics (English). She is proficient in both written and spoken English and Malay. She is also conversant in Mandarin and has knowledge of Japanese and Korean languages. Mei Kuan has been on the Dean’s List for three years running. Having written for the campus newspaper and residential college magazine, joining Ipoh Echo has helped utilise her writing and language skills. In her spare time she enjoys running (races).

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