updated 3 Aug 2009, 20:38
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Mon, Aug 03, 2009
The New Straits Times
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Cupid idea for single women

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia: Non-governmental organisations have been encouraged to come up with proposals on dating services to help single women or mothers find partners.

Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil said the ministry wants NGOs to play a bigger role in such matters.

"The ministry is not going to set up cupid clubs or dating services. But we are open to the idea and we can work together with NGOs on this.

"They should make a proposal and come and see us," she said after opening the "Empowering Women Who are Single Again" seminar at the Sunway Medical Centre yesterday. The meeting was sponsored by Siemens.

Presently, the Wanita MCA has a match making services.

Shahrizat felt that having cupid clubs was not a bad idea as it does not go against "our customs or religious beliefs."

"It's like the olden days where we had match making or arranged marriages done by our parents.

"But the ministry has no time to do this. We have to look at the policies and other governmental matters. But we welcome the NGOs to organise them and they can approach us for help."

Shahrizat estimates that the number of single mothers in the country was close to a million by now.

"When I left the ministry (in March last year) I remember the number was somewhere around 711,000."

She said her ministry would help the hardcore poor single mothers via the entrepreneurship programme which would be launched by Amanah Ikhtar Malaysia soon.

The programme aims to create 4,000 women entrepreneurs by 2012.

"Our emphasis now is to help them to improve their standard of living by giving them the necessary skills." -NST


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