Five hundred kind souls marched 1.5km to raise funds for Pertapis Children’s Home.
By Jonathon Teo
In the early Saturday morning on Nov. 4, a corner in the East Coast Park was buzzing with activities as the crowd warm-up for a charity walkathon, organized by Pertapis, a Muslim-based welfare organization, for their children home.
With the theme “Many Steps Change Our Life”, the event aimed to raise S$200,000 to help fund the daily operations of the Pertapis Children’s Home. Every month, Pertapis Children’s Home face a deficit of about S$35,000. The charity walkathon is Pertapis’ largest fundraising event and the funds raised go to improving the living conditions of the children’s home, making it a more conducive learning environment for the children. The event was also an initiative for the home to engage the community, creating awareness for the underprivileged children in Singapore.
The Pertapis Children’s Home helps children in crisis, many of whom are victims of parental abuse or neglect. Besides providing residential care, the home also gives the children a supportive environment as they undergo rehabilitation and education programs.
The walkathon flagged off at 8.45am with a crowd of 500 marching on the 1.5km route. Among the hundreds of participants present for the walkathon was guest-of-honour, Associate Professor Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, also the Parliamentary Secretary for Ministry of Health and Ministry of Transport.
After the walkathon, participants were treated to an array of entertaining performances on stage and the different food and game stalls. Proceeds from the stalls will also go to funding the works of the organization.
An awards presentation was also held to appreciate various sponsors for their contributions. City Harvest Church pastor, Choong Tsih Ming was present to receive a token of appreciation on behalf of the church for contributing to the charity walkathon. This donation came from the offerings collected at CHC’s weekly all-night prayer meeting held on Sep. 21, a commitment made by the church to donating part of the offerings collected from each prayer meeting to a charity organization each week.
As a whole, the charity walkathon brought a satisfied feeling towards both volunteers and participants. “Volunteering in such an event like this, I feel that I can give back to society,” said 23-year-old Muhammad Syamsul Zairudin who helped out at the event that day.
Student Amirah Rahwani, 17, felt that such an event was beneficial for the kids. Rahwani, who recently visited the home, said that the funds raised from the walkathon would give the children’s home a much-needed facelift. “It will help to improve the conditions of the home, such as the playground,” he said.