Book launch on 11-Sept-2013

Yesterday, we had our official press launch of the book at Coffee 5 Cups in Plaza Damas 3, Kuala Lumpur. Media turnout was absolutely amazing. We were packed to the brim at the launch venue but that made it even more enjoyable. Kayo and Jo Hann kept the coffee, tea and snacks going.

Jo Hann also doubled up as our MC, keeping us on time. We certainly wanted the media’s attention but did not want to waste their time waiting for us.

Some of the subjects from the book had been invited for the launch. Nur Azmina ‘Compassion in action’, Abdullah bin Johar “I’ve got just the right song for you”, Mohanjit and Rajpal Kuckreja, our Orang Asli kids; Zava, Justina and Jericho, Rajen and Timothy of SEMOA, Sasha HIll.. These people who have become friends were there to share in the moment. After all, what would the book be without them!

  Tan Joo Lee, Kenny Loh & Allison Hill

Press conference on 11-Sept-2013

With some of the subjects of the book

Nur Azmina or Che Na as she likes to be called was in tears when she saw her spread in the book. I think that she didn’t realise the extent of what she had done for the homeless in cutting their hair until she saw herself pictured in the book. Abdullah bin Johar, the barber from Sungai Besi told me how bangga (proud) he felt to be a part of the book. Law Siak Hong, our champion of heritage in Perak drove all the way from Ipoh for the launch but he got lost so only arrived after the event was over.

The Orang Asli kids from Tras, Pahang were a little taken aback by the number of people at the launch but they handled it well. Sasha Hill also helped to pass me the books that were being given to all of the subjects who attended our launch.

I noticed the look of surprise on the faces of the press when the subjects were introduced one by one. As my subjects are the true heroes of the book, I wanted everyone to see how we are all one big family. For me, it was also an emotional moment. It had been such a long journey for me, having put in all those miles traveling the length and breadth of our country. To see the media’s reaction to the book really meant something.

Over the next few weeks, expect to see articles about us in the paper, media and online. My hope is that the public will apprecite the message of the book. We are all in this together. The journey I took over the past 3 years has truly reaffirmed my what we always knew deep down – that ordinary Malaysians are essentially decent, hardworking and tolerant folks, who embrace diversity with open arms.

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