Baring Singapore’s Heart and Soul

Six journalists from across India – Bangalore, Belgaum, Chennai, Kolkata, New Delhi – spent five days in Singapore exploring the city-state’s heart and soul. The five-day programme included touchpoints which showcased the vibrant arts and culture scene, the blossoming social entrepreneurship landscape, as well as urban liveability solutions. 

Mr Ravindran Nagalingam, COO, Singapore Indian Development Association (SINDA) [second from left] hosted our media friends for a traditional Malay lunch in Kampong Glam before they embarked on a heritage trail around the district. Issues discussed ranged from the nature and value of community self-help groups to the Central Provident Fund facilitating self-reliance amongst Singaporeans.
Testing out the technology-assisted gym equipment at the Enabling Village, aimed to facilitate the rehabilitation and recovery of the elderly and injured.
Our Indian media friends were given a taste of what it means to be visually impaired when they were brought through a guided blind simulation by social enterprise Etch Empathy which seeks to imbibe empathy in others through realistic experiences. Founder Aaron Yeoh (right) leads the way at the Enabling Village.
Explaining the typical Singaporean way of life in public housing apartments built by the Housing Development Board, docent Lianne (left) had earlier shown our media friends around her apartment and her neighbourhood.
Sharing a light moment with the volunteer guide at the Singapore City Gallery, an admittedly major highlight amongst our Indian media friends. The tour included perspectives and considerations which played a major part in the progression of Singapore to the modern city-state it is now.
Striking a pose with the statue of Sir Stamford Raffles, founder of modern Singapore. The statue was one of the many stops in the Jubilee Walk trail which was introduced in 2015 to commemorate Singapore’s 50th year of independence, connecting elements from Singapore’s past, present, and future.
Taking a closer look at how black soldier flies turn waste into a nutrient-dense fertiliser and in turn, support the urban farming ecosystem at the Citizen Farm at Jalan Penjara. They were treated to a farm-to-table lunch and a robust discussion about urban farming shortly after the tour.
Trying on different hats belonging to the different ethnic communities from the Indian diaspora which over the centuries has called Singapore home and contributed to its growth, at the Indian Heritage Centre.
Showing our Indian media friends a slice of life from the Chinese Peranakan culture – unique to this part of the world – Alvin Yapp (third from left), owner of private museum, The Intan, shares the stories behind his collection of antiques. Together, these pieces of heritage tell the story a culture which stemmed out of immigration.
Ravi Sonnad (third from left) briefing the journalists on the impact of his social enterprise, Enabling Leadership, in India and the challenges faced in ensuring social impact. Ravi was also joined by co-founder of Billion Bricks, Prasoon Kumar (not in picture), at Singapore’s first co-working space, HUB Singapore.
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