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Building a caring community together by paying it forward

Speech by Mr Alvin Tan, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth & Trade and Industry, at the launch of the Business Times Budding Artists Fund Community Give Back Programme

Deputy Chairman of The RICE Company Limited Board, Mr Alvin Tay,
Senior Vice-President of Certis, Mr Tan Toi Chia,
Distinguished guests, parents and children,

Good afternoon.

  1. I am delighted to join you today for the launch of the second edition – and the first virtual one – of the Certis-Business Times Budding Artists Fund Community Give Back Programme 2020.


  2. Started in 2019, the programme empowers children who have benefited from The Business Times Budding Artists Fund to use their talents to give back and enrich the lives of others in the community.
  3. Now, this year’s programme is particularly meaningful, with the focus on equipping children with a future-ready skill – stop-motion video editing. In the first workshop which started today, the children learned to develop their own characters and stories and saw how it came alive through animation. I hope that they have discovered how science and arts can richly complement each other, with technology enhancing the audio-visual experience of music, dance, theatre and visual arts.

    Uplifting communities through the arts

  4. Many of us, children and adults alike, have turned to the arts as a source of comfort and inspiration in these difficult times. The arts can provide respite, connect us as a community, and enhance our well-being. Allow me to share an example.
  5. One of the student facilitators at today’s workshop was Nur Adrianz Bin Kamaruddin (Adrianz)1. He joined The Little Arts Academy's2 dance programme in 2014 and continued with the youth programme in 2017. He was also part of the Little Art Academy’s dance group - the Sugar Rush Crew - which has travelled to Vietnam and Malaysia to represent Singapore.
  6. And this is not the first time that Adrianz has served in this programme. Earlier this year, he taught children to dance via a virtual workshop during the Circuit Breaker, and the dance was meaningful in many ways as it was subsequently posted to Tik Tok to observe Kindness Day SG on 22 May 2020. I am very proud of his achievements and his passion in spreading the joy of dance to others. So well done, Adrianz!
  7. To our children, I hope you have been inspired to not only take home a new skill today, but to pay it forward by teaching others or using it to develop creations that will uplift their spirits. Continue to grow the spirit of caring during this pandemic and partner one another, so we can become stronger as a society.

    Everyone can play a part in contributing to a caring society

  8. I would also like to thank Certis for your generous support towards The Business Times Budding Artists Fund, and The RICE Company Limited and Business Times for your commitment to creating opportunities for children and youths to enjoy the arts.
  9. I hope this will inspire more individuals and organisations to step forward and be a part of our broader SG Cares Movement to build a caring society. Now, a good way to start is to download the SG Cares app. It alerts you to a range of regular volunteering opportunities based on your preferences and helps you to take action conveniently.
  10. For those who cannot volunteer regularly, you can still give meaningfully through everyday acts of kindness: like showing empathy for persons with special needs, helping an elderly with their shopping, or regularly checking the well-being of a senior who is living alone. In doing so, all of us can amplify the spirit of SG Cares and contribute to a more caring society.


  11. Let me close with a quote by aviator and author Amelia Earhart who said that “A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” Likewise, I believe that today’s programme marks the beginning of many small acts of kindness that will bloom in the lives of others and cause whole communities to flourish.
  12. I hope that all participants had a meaningful and fruitful time at today’s workshop!
  13. Thank you.

1 Nur Adrianz Bin Kamaruddin, is a 14-year-old beneficiary of the Business Times Budding Artists Fund.

2 The Little Arts Academy offers training programmes in music, dance, theatre and visual arts for children aged 6-12. Youth programmes are offered for those aged 13-19 at 10 Square. Both programmes are overseen by The RICE Company Limited, a non-profit organisation that manages The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (BT BAF).


Last updated on 08 December 2020