Posted on: 30 Dec 2016
Funds were raised via the online fundraising webpage GIVEasia in addition to cash donations from the Recruit Express staff, and they were matched dollar-to-dollar by the company.
Besides raising funds for MDAS, which needs more than $900,000 each year to run its programmes, the Recruit Express Group organized a half-day event on 19 November 2016 comprising activities such as photo hunt, relay games of jigsaw puzzle and memory game for the 15 beneficiaries from MDAS. Such activities may seem like a simple task to many able and healthy bodies but not to these 15 youths. Depending on their condition, lifting a spoon or picking up a card may be challenging to some of them.
Despite these youths’ physical challenges, the Recruit Express staff volunteers noticed that all of them have a common belief: with a positive attitude, you can overcome all difficulties and live life to the fullest.
"There is a lot of stigma surrounding people with muscular dystrophy, a lot of which stems from the fear of unfamiliarity. A short day spent with the beneficiaries has not only brought them much joy, it has also taught me many lessons. The most impactful is their persistence and resilience. Instead of letting the fixed circumstances of life pull them back and hold them down, the children are incredibly brave and are very open to sharing with people once they've gotten over the initial shyness," said Ms. Rosaline Tay-Lim, consultant at Recruit Express. "My beneficiary has worked with the limited mobility he has with innovation and creativity, utilizing tools to overcome difficulties in daily life such as tapping EZ-Link cards and pressing of lift buttons; things we take for granted. Days after the event has ended, their fighting spirit continues to inspire."
This half-day event also gave the beneficiaries a chance to do things that they didn’t know they could. Kylie Ng, Division Manager at Recruit Express who is the chairman of this year’s CSR said “One of our staff volunteers shared with me that he overheard a delighted mother telling her son that she is happy that he got to see the National Stadium and that he can proudly tell his friends that he has seen the Stadium. His school previously did not allow him to visit the Stadium with his classmates due to his condition.” She added “We need to raise more public awareness on muscular dystrophy and other deliberating diseases so that more social and financial resources can be directed to help the beneficiaries.”
The event culminated with a sumptuous dinner for these youths, some of whom were accompanied by their parents or caregivers. During the dinner, Lim Kay Choong who suffers from muscular dystrophy, addressed the youths with a personal account of how the disease has never stopped him from participating in sporting activities. A national champion (BC4 classification) in the sport event Boccia, he had represented Singapore in the 2015 ASEAN Para Games. A former SMU graduate, he is now a SEO Specialist. His speech has inspired the MDAS youths that everyone can play their part to the society and achieve what they wish for in life.