Citizens Journal
Fri May 03 2024

Haven in a storm: Rumah Perlindungan Sosial needs your help

Youth & Children
This article features :

Originally published on Citizen’s Journal Published: May 1, 2024

Rumah Perlindungan Sosial (RPS) is a Malaysian shelter offering sanctuary to women and children escaping domestic violence and other crises.

Imagine a life filled with fear and violence. For countless women and children in Malaysia, this is a harsh reality. But there’s a lifeline for them – Rumah Perlindungan Sosial (RPS), a shelter offering sanctuary and a chance to rebuild their lives.

Klang-based RPS has a story rooted in a specific need. Founded in 1996 by a dedicated group of people with the initial support of YWCA, RPS emerged in response to the passage of the Domestic Violence Act.

Their mission: to provide safe havens for victims of domestic violence.

The unwavering spirit of Rumah Perlindungan Sosial


“Once you’re doing that kind of work, you come across women who need shelter,” RPS committee member Sheila Devaraj recalls. “

So then we started, you know, at first we were renting a house. So it just grew from there.”

The dedication of the committee members bring to RPS is palpable. Over the past years, RPS has provided holistic help for more than 1000 women, their children and teenagers in crisis.

This include victim of domestic violence, single mothers, unwed mothers, rape survivors, abused children and run-away teens.


However, RPS faces a constant battle against limited resources. The RPS committee members, many of them volunteers, work tirelessly to bridge the gap. They provide food, shelter, and crucial support – from police reports and medical care to counselling and job placements.

“There has to be much more, many more shelters and services provided,” Sheila adds.

“Not only food and a roof. There’s got to be counselling to get them back into society.”

RPS doesn’t just help adults. They recognise the trauma children often endure, offering educational support, skills training, and a chance to heal.


Imagine the dedication it takes for just three staff – working shifts – to ensure someone is always there, ready to answer a late-night call.

“The home has to run with three staff who do shift work,” Sheila explains.

“There’s never a time there’s nobody in our shelter. Even at night, so when the hospital calls at night, they have to send a rape victim or the police.”

A beacon of hope needs your light


Despite their tireless efforts, RPS faces a constant struggle – funding. The one-off grants they receive barely cover operational costs.

“Our main thing is to pay our staff,” Sheila says.

“That is the biggest part of where the funding would go.”

Imagine trying to run a shelter with a staff of three and other overheads with limited resources, Sheila recounts.

However, RPS isn’t alone in their fight. Sheila mentions the support they’ve received from good Samaritans like Bukit Gasing assemblyman Rajiv Rishyakaran.

The Selangor state government, recognising the crucial role RPS plays, provided a one-off RM18,000 funding from their Wanita Berdaya Selangor fund.


The RM18,000, as Sheila recounts, went entirely towards fixing the leaking roof and faulty wiring of the shelter.

While basic repairs are crucial, they don’t address the ongoing operational costs – staff salaries, food, utilities, and the myriad expenses needed to keep the shelter running smoothly.

In a recent display of their unwavering spirit, RPS launched the RPS Ecoweave Project to not only generate much-needed funds but also empower the women and children they serve.

This innovative project focuses on creating coasters from recycled materials, offering a sustainable solution while raising awareness for RPS.

The project goes beyond simple fundraising. The committee members see the bigger picture. By involving the women housed at RPS in the Ecoweave Project, they’re not just creating coasters; they’re instilling valuable skills and fostering an entrepreneurial spirit.


RPS is one of the many organisations that have joined, hoping for a continuous stream of donations to keep their doors open. This is where you, the public, come in. By donating through Sokong, you can make a real difference and help RPS continue their life-changing work.

“We are not well known, we don’t really know how to advertise,” Sheila says, who also highlighted that the committee members are made of those who are not technologically savvy.

These acts of kindness, coupled with the potential of Sokong donations, offer a glimmer of hope for the future of RPS.

Sokong emerged as an initiative rooted in Malaysiakini’s commitment to creating a positive impact. The platform bridges the gap between NGOs and donors, fostering a culture of giving, compassion, and collaboration.

By connecting people with organisations, Sokong envisions driving lasting social change.

If you would like to contribute to support the incredible cause, you can donate to Rumah Perlindungan Sosial via Sokong. Click here.

Citizen’s Journal proudly joins hands with as the official media partner. is the platform connecting individuals with diverse organisations supporting various causes. Together, we foster collective action to create impactful change. Interested in supporting non-profit organisations and making a difference? Click this link for more information on how you can participate and contribute to meaningful initiatives.

by malaysiakini

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