BARISAN Nasional’s candidate for Petaling Jaya Utara Chew Hoong Ling wants to do more than merely giving out provisions to change the life of the urban poor.
“The most effective way of removing poverty is through education,” said the 33-year-old of MCA, who is taking on DAP heavyweight Tony Pua in GE13.
Chew, a vocal social activist and who was brave enough to donate 60% of her liver to a stranger, was game to implement the concept of social enterprise on a large scale if she was elected.
She cited the Education Excellence Programme she took part in from 2004 to 2006 that effectively helped 1,000 Indian pupils achieve significant academic improvement, but the programme was discontinued due to funding problem.
“We can help more people through social enterprise, that is by applying a business model to charitable works to make them self-sustaining,” she said after talking to participants of a parenting skills workshop in the Sri Mahamari-yamman temple.
She said the parenting workshop, organised by Section 19 MIC at the 50-year-old temple near the Damansara Bestari flats in SS2, could help inculcate a positive attitude among the young.
She added that it had been her service team’s long-term project to help the community living in the flats.
They made door-to-door visits to understand the residents’ needs and provided assistance including rice, diapers, crutches, wheelchairs and prosthetic limbs to the poor.
Meanwhile, her opponent, Pua, has been on a hectic campaign trail in Petaling Jaya with newcomer Yeo Bee Yin, who is facing MCA veteran Datuk C.K. Lim and independent candidate Liew Wei Beng in the Damansara Utama state seat.
Pua left the area on Monday to campaign nationwide.
During a morning walkabout in Kampung Chempaka market on Sunday, Pua said issues plaguing the new village, including old drainage and illegal structures, stemmed from a lack of planning. These long-standing problems had to be tackled strategically and this took time.
Commenting on the fatal snatch theft that happened in Bukit Gasing on Saturday, he said crime was a serious issue in Petaling Jaya that led to housing estates setting up their own gated-and-guarded schemes.