Newly launched website features online museum about Sungai Buloh leprosarium.
The Way Home is the title of a book of stories about children seeking to be reunited with their biological parents - parents they were separated from because of a diagnosis of leprosy.
It is also now the name of a new website that continues where the book ended. The objective is to encourage descendants of Malaysia's Sungai Buloh leprosy settlement "to get to know the emotional world of their parents and also to see the beauty of the history of where they came from."
The book's authors Eannee Tan and Joshua Wong hope that the website will serve as a common platform for families who have been torn apart by leprosy to share their memories, photos and videos. "By doing this," they state, "we hope to encourage more descendants to come back and trace their roots while their parents are still alive. Our mission is to reunite the former leprosy patients and their descendants through all possible channels. In the end, we hope to empower them with knowledge and courage to preserve their own family history."
The website includes many moving stories and testimonials from parents and the children they were separated from, oral history videos and plenty of photographs. In addition, there is an online museum relating the history of the Sungai Buloh leprosy settlement, which was once the second largest leprosarium in the world and the site of important medical research into the disease.
On display are garments made by Sungai Buloh residents, handicrafts, documents, research equipment, artifacts and old photographs that provide a rich portrait of life at the settlement in times past.
Visit the website at www.thewayhome.my