A record 3000 walkers of all ages, the majority being sons and daughters of Army families, attached to the ‘Viru Daru’ Society, stunned Colombo and its suburbs Saturday (26) morning when they launched their inaugural fund-raising ‘Viru Daru Stride - 2012’ Walk from the Galle Face green to cover a distance of about 8 km.
The start of the marathon walk at about 8.00 a.m. received a heartening fillip following the arrival of Mr Namal Rajapaksa, Member of Parliament, Lieutenant General Jagath Jayasuriya, Commander of the Army and Mrs Manjulika Jayasuriya, President, Seva Vanitha Army Branch (SVAB), Commander of the Navy, Senior Army officers and other invitees to join the walk.
Ms Deshanee Jayasuriya, Chairperson, Viru Daru Society, together with senior office bearers received the distinguished guests warmly and invited them to join the walk, meant to raise funds for various Viru Daru welfare projects and awareness among the general public on the well-being of children of War Hero families. The introducing public walk, open to everyone also expects to provide psychological counseling to war affected children of both civilians and War Heroes with different programmes, expected to be launched by the Viru Daru Society (VDS) in the future.
Strolling Elephants, horses and sniffing dogs, different fancy dresses and models, etc giving a hilarious dimension to the walking parade, added fun and amusement to the event as onlookers along Kompannaveediya road, Gangarama road, Pittala junction, Liberty roundabout, Duplication road, Bambalapitiya, Galle road, Kollupitiya and return to Galle Face, cheered the participating walkers, including the Commander of the Army and Mrs Manjulika Jayasuriya, the heavyweight behind the success of Viru Daru Society projects.
At the end of the walk, all participants received certificates from the organizers recognizing the partaking. A brief musical session afterwards culminated the day’s programme.