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07 November 2006

Building An Inclusive Society


Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.0.1)

no one

    no person; not anyone; nobody: No one is home.



no‧bod‧y [noh-bod-ee, -buhd-ee, -buh-dee] Pronunciation Key pronoun, noun, plural -bod‧ies.

–pronoun

1. no person; not anyone; no one: Nobody answered, so I hung up.
 
–noun
2. a person of no importance, influence, or power.

President SR Nathan touched on this topic during his speech at the opening of the 11th Parliament .

"We will build an inclusive society which leaves no one* behind." - President S.R. Nathan, 02 Nov 2006

Well, President Nathan, I have news for you. People are already being left behind even as we speak although I applaud you for taking this topic up in your speech and plucking those heads that are currently still stuck in the parliamentary sands.

Also, a few of us are already trying to do something about it. It's called the RunForFunds Project.

Granted that our resources and our achievements thus far are mere specks as compared to the projects of national scale like Community Chest, National Kidney Foundation (!), Sharity, SATA, SANA, etc., there is this one thing that the big boys can't give us. The satisfaction of knowing exactly what we are doing and how our contributions are benefiting our recipients.

Let me tell you what I was guilty of. I was guilty of slotting coins into tins on Saturday flag days just so that I could have the sticker to put on my shirt, ensuing peace from the hundreds of volunteers on the streets hounding for your donation.  Did I know exactly who I was donating to? Did I know exactly how my money is going to be put to use?

The answer unfortunately is no, no and up to today, still no and no. I am not proud of it.
I have known of friends who were very diligent in dialing the 1900-charity numbers every year without fail. I can't remember if it was the NKF Show or the President's Stars Charity. You know what? None of them could either. All they were trying to do was to try to win that luxurious condo.

Now wait a minute. What were we dialing the 1900-number for again? I forget.
That was before I got to know old school chum, Adrian and his RunForFunds Project.
Read here to find out more about RunForFunds Project from my archives. --> Click Here.

Again, I reiterate that RunForFunds Project does not solicit funds from the general public. We are 100% funded privately by well wishers. The main purpose of a few friends and myself spreading the word is only to creating awareness and hopefully inspire more people to get up and start their own projects.

Granted that the Gahmen has many assistance programs in place, they are akin to the ocean fishing trawler where, while they are able to cover a much larger area in a single pass, the holes in the net are just too big, resulting in many smaller fishes slipping through them. This is where we come in. We are the scuba divers who are there to catch these fishes that the trawler has missed as wel as to cover these holes.

I was chatting with Qiaoyun last week and she got me thinking about a few things.

"Where do you find all these holes?"

The answer is simple. There are everywhere. You only need to get out there and open your eyes.

How do you know which holes to cover?

Honestly, we don't. We just take it one at a time whichever lands on our lap first. While it may sound haphazard and even to the extend of clueless. There is only so much that we can do with our limited resources. Yes, on nationwide scale, what we had done amounted to nothing of significance.

We only know that we are doing the best we can.

The main idea behind spreading the world is to inspire more people to step up and form their own "scuba diving groups". You cover this end of the net, he covers another end while we cover this end. If we can have enough "scuba diving groups" and covering one hole at a time, all the holes will eventually be covered one day.

This is a long term project for everyone. If we continue our efforts, there will be that one day where all the holes will be covered. Sure the cynics will be saying that as we cover the holes, more will appear elsewhere. Well, this is a valid point but we are only truly defeated if we lose hope, inspiration, aspiration and motivation.

Bear in mind, it is always better to have one less under-privileged person than one more.

Anyway, the Singapore Marathon is just round the corner on 03 December 2006. Adrian and his super friends will be running again (I only know how to super wave my super pompoms). I will cover more of the RunForFunds Project in the week leading up to it.
Watch this space.

As a parting shot, please pardon my cheekiness:



Dear President Nathan,

It is most heartening that you are aware of the less fortunate who are at risk of being left behind. I would like to invite you to be a part of our project as a "scuba diver". Drop us a note or keep a lookout of a goofy-looking Adrian during your East Coast Park jogs.
We'd love to hear from you. 

p.s. How do you tell if the person is Adrian? Simple. If you see a bloke that makes you laugh by just looking at him and yet still outlast and outrun all your beefing bodyguards behind you. It's him. 

Jay & Adrian

* I hope "no one" refers to the first definition and not the second. 
- Voxeros

1. spinnee left...
Tuesday, 7 November 2006 2:03 pm
when is sgp going to be liberated from all these nonsensical people.. sigh


2. JayWalk left...
Tuesday, 7 November 2006 2:46 pm :: 
Spinnee: When non-nonsensical (double negative?) people finally decides to stand up against them and do something about it.


3. akk left...
Thursday, 9 November 2006 4:35 pm
yay!!! RRF soon again! If i have frens who want to RRF, what should I do??


4. JayWalk left...
Thursday, 9 November 2006 9:08 pm ::
Akk: It's *ahem* RFF, dear. AS for friends who want to Run For Funds, may I suggest getting in touch with Adrian directly.

One thing to point out as that we had such a good fund raising last year, that we will not be raising any money this year. However, creating public awareness is still very much a priority this year.
 

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