MIRI: A statewide fundraising effort to help the hearing impaired excel in sports and personal development has been launched.
The first leg of ‘Silent Run 2.0 - Run with The Deaf’ flagged off at Marina Parkcity with 800 runners.
Assistant Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin, who launched the run, urged the public to support the worthy initiative.
The next leg will take place in Bintulu tomorrow, Sibu on Sept 23 with the final event happening in Kuching on Sept 30.
“Silent Run 2.0 aims to build a community of hearing impaired runners who will look out for each other and make a difference,” said Lee.
“The deaf need greater access to sports development, awareness and education.
“Let’s give them our support as Sept 23 is International Day of Sign Languages as part of International Week of the Deaf,” he added.
Some of the participants for the run holding up messages in support of the deaf community.
Silent Run is also raising funds so the community can participate in the Deaflympics - an International Olympic Committee-sanctioned event at which deaf athletes compete. The last Games was held in Turkey in 2017.
“I am very happy that we now have the Sarawak Association for the Deaf Northern Region to help organise programmes to help the community,” said Lee.
One of the participants, Natalia C, said she learned basic sign language when she was in secondary school.
“It feels good to be able to communicate with the deaf community.
“Deaf employees are happy when you are able to use sign language.
“Even a simple hello or thank you would boost their confidence.”
Natalie called on the public to learn basic sign language so that the deaf would feel more inclusive in society.
Also present were Piasau assemblyman Datuk Sebastian Ting, Miri mayor Adam Yii, Sarawak Deaf Sports Association president Albert Wong and Victor Hii from the Silent Runners Club.