Celebrating Singapore, Our Home at Singapore Day 2014
On 29th March, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office Grace Fu joined over 9,000 Singaporeans in Victoria Park, London for Singapore Day 2014. The event was a reunion for Singaporeans living, working and studying in the United Kingdom and Europe to come together and “Celebrate Singapore, Our Home”.
“I could feel the strong Singapore spirit among the participants today. More than 180 overseas Singaporeans volunteered to help organise and contribute to the event. Apart from Singapore Day, Singaporeans abroad do organise their own programmes to keep in touch with home and with one another. I am glad to see that many have a keen interest in what is happening in Singapore and want to contribute to make Singapore a better home for us all.” said Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean.
Singapore Day 2014 provided an opportunity for Singaporeans abroad to network and update themselves on Singapore. Participants enjoyed the familiar tastes, sights and sounds of home including authentic hawker food and were updated on developments in Singapore, including the education landscape, the sports scene, infrastructural developments and career opportunities. Participants were entertained by the Dim Sum Dollies, Hossan Leong, The Noose’s Chua En-lai and Michelle Chong, music duo and radio entertainers Jack & Rai, as well as indie rockers, The Great Spy Experiment. Fellow overseas Singaporeans also took to the stage to entertain the crowd.
Active Involvement of Overseas Singaporeans
This year’s Singapore Day saw the strong involvement of overseas Singaporeans. More than 180 overseas Singaporeans from the UK and even as far as the US contributed as volunteers for the day. Singapore Day also showcased the diverse talents of overseas Singaporeans, including 13 UK-based Singaporeans who contributed creative artworks and musical performances. In the lead-up to Singapore Day 2014, Singaporeans across Europe started their own community volunteer recruitment drives for the event. Singaporeans in London also led a ground-up initiative to provide accommodation for fellow Singaporeans coming in from outside of London.
Dialogue on SG50 Celebrations
Minister Grace Fu had the opportunity to have a dialogue with about 40 overseas Singaporeans, mainly students and working professionals living in London. They come from varied fields including engineering, education, the arts and the sciences. They shared their hopes and aspirations for Singapore and discussed ideas on how the overseas Singapore community could be involved in the upcoming 50th anniversary celebrations.
She said, “Singaporeans based overseas are an integral part of our Singapore family and it is important that they be involved in the celebration of our 50th year of independence in 2015. As we commemorate our journey as one people, we should reflect on what the first 50 years of Singapore’s development means to us and how we can shape our future together. The SG50 celebration is indeed a special milestone for all Singaporeans, no matter where they are.”
Background on Singapore Day 2014
Singapore Day is a collaborative effort by the Overseas Singaporean Unit and its partners from the public, people and private sectors. It is held annually in major cities where there are a significant number of Singaporeans. Singapore Days have been held in New York (2007), Melbourne (2008), London (2009), Shanghai (2011), New York (2012) and Sydney (2013). More details on Singapore Day 2014 can be found on www.SingaporeDay.sg and www.fb.com/SingaporeDay.