Yayasan Chow Kit was incorporated in 2010 but before this, we were a children’s programme under Yayasan Salam Malaysia, a local NGO which looked at connecting volunteers and corporates to community projects and community needs.
We were then called, Nur Salam, which literally means ‘Light and Peace”- so we were the ‘house of light and peace’ for children or in other words, a sanctuary.
NurSalam was born out of a need to help and protect the children in and around Chow Kit, who were vulnerable and marginalized. YCK’s founder, Dato Dr Hartini, inclusive of Raja Azizan and Kak Arfidah, had worked with the children there for a long time and they knew what the children needed most- a bigger space where very poor and marginalized children could seek refuge, even if it was, for a couple of hours a day, eat and sleep and get involved with basic educational and health activities.The three of us put our heads together, and hatched a plan to find this bigger space..
We partnered with the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development and the Wilayah Social Department and then engaged with other individuals and corporate bodies and NGO partners. We looked for funding- we asked, begged and did everything ourselves. It was a tough, uphill battle when we first started but we kept at it!
The rest, is history!