The inaugural Haw Par Para Sports Bursary Awards is launched today in a bid to level up the local disability sporting scene. The award supports deserving para athletes from disadvantaged or less well-to-do backgrounds to enable them to continue to pursue sporting excellence and shine on both the international and local stages. This year, a total of 29 beneficiaries benefitted from the inaugural bursary to support the athletes and their sporting pursuits.
A total sum of $42,600 in total were given out, with each para athlete receiving between $900 to $1,800, depending on their occupation, household income, support needs, current performance and reasons for application. This financial support provided will hopefully assist these para athletes to push for greater heights in their sport.
Among the recipients of the award are some of our Asian Para Games (APG) stars, who returned home triumphant after a successful campaign in Jakarta. Team Singapore won a total of 10 medals at the APG – 3 golds, 2 silvers and 5 bronzes – the best showing ever. Of the 29 winners of the Haw Par Para Sports Bursary Awards, 6 of them took part in APG. They are:
- Faye Lim (boccia; APG silver medalist)
- Muhd Diroy Noordin (athletics)
- Muhd Farihin Mazlan (athletics)
- Logaraj Raju (shooting)
- Thomas Nathan Chan (tenpin bowling)
- Kelvin Tan Wei Lian (tenpin bowling)
The award ceremony was held today at the National Youth Sports Institute (NYSI) Satellite and was graced by Guest-of-Honour, Education Minister Mr Ong Ye Kung as well as CEO of Haw Par Corporation, Mr Wee Ee Lim.
Haw Par Corporation Limited has been one of SDSC’s key sponsors over the years. The kind funding support from Haw Par allows SDSC to carry out various programmes and initiatives that have helped to shape the vibrant disability sports scene we have today in Singapore.
Mr Wee Ee Lim, CEO of Haw Par Corporation, commented, “The SDSC athletes are models of resilience for our society and are deserving of support. Through sponsoring the para sports bursary, Haw Par hopes to give para athletes a leg up in their pursuit of sports excellence, and enable more persons with disabilities to take up para sports.”
Ms Kelly Fan, Executive Director of Singapore Disability Sports Council, “For able-bodied persons, a primary hurdle of being active is likely time. For persons with disabilities (PWD), financial well-being is a key crippling factor. We’ve met parents struggling with single income, when one parent has to take care of a child with disability full-time. How would we dare ask the parents to let their child take part in sports, when they cannot afford the money for basic transportation and meals? We’ve met PWD who shun sports, because they were chided by family, employers for daring to spend time to pursue interests, when employment was already hard for them. Haw Par’s support for this bursary thus sends an important message: that disability should never disqualify someone from being active. It’s a foundation we hope to build on, and help more PWD access and excel through sports.”