Singapore Youths Learn Inclusiveness through Racing as Refugees
SINGAPORE, 1 – 2 June 2018 – As part of a humanitarian themed amazing race, over 240 youths from different schools will embark on the 30 Hour Famine Camp’s Backpack Challenge, World Vision’s annual flagship youth engagement programme to experience first-hand the realities of inequality.
With Asian disasters on the rise* and over 35 million children living in forced displacement world wide**, it is increasingly important for youths in Singapore to understand the impact of disasters even while Singapore has been spared the calamities of their neighbours. Apart from undertaking a 30-hour food fast, the 200 campers aged 13-28 will work in teams to compete in an amazing race with humanitarian-themed activities which mirror the struggles of children in developing world living in forced displacement worldwide – as refugees, asylum seekers, and casualties of natural disasters. Campers live off bare essentials during the camp, and this parallels the resource constraints faced by families who are forced to flee their homes for safety. They will be reminded that while the race is a game for them, it is a reality for the 35 million refugees worldwide.
Lilian Chung, National Director of World Vision Singapore, says, “To create a more equitable world without abject poverty, it is important to groom our youths into compassionate world citizens. We want to raise a generation of change agents who understand and are empathetic towards those facing poverty and humanitarian crises worldwide.”
Campers will learn to leverage social media for good when they advocate on behalf of children living in conflict zones and disaster settings throughout the camp.
Senior Operations Director from World Vision Bangladesh, Jared Berends, will also be sharing first-hand accounts of working in fragile contexts, including challenges faced in the refugee settlements that have emerged in the midst of the Myanmar-Bangladesh refugee crisis.
The 30 Hour Famine Camp will see campers participating in a variety of service-oriented activities with local community partners who share World Vision’s commitment to aiding and empowering children and families in need. Some of these activities include helping out with kitchen duties at Willing Hearts, the organisation of donated items at the Salvation Army, and the distribution of groceries to low-income families with Ray of Hope.
Breaking the Singapore Book of Records
On 2 June, together with their camp leaders and other event volunteers, campers will also enter the Singapore Book of Records by passing down 23 sacks of rice along a sit-up relay involving over 240 youths to mirror the arduous challenges of humanitarian aid distribution. In the final hour leading up to the end of the 30-hour food fast, Singapore YouTube influencers Aiken Chia and Annette Lee will perform in a closing celebration to encourage campers to continue using their talents and voices beyond the camp to be a force for good in the world.
For more information on the 30 Hour Famine Camp, please visit www.worldvision.org.sg/30hfc.
About World Vision
World Vision is a Christian relief, development, and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with vulnerable children and families worldwide to enable them to reach their full potential by tackling the root causes of poverty and injustice. As the world’s largest international children’s charity, World Vision works in about 100 countries worldwide, and serves all people on the basis of need, regardless of ethnicity, religion, gender, or nationality. Our programmes address a range of essential needs which have a critical bearing on the livelihoods of poor families and the well-being of children. These needs include emergency response and preparedness, food and water security, sanitary hygiene, health and nutrition, education, economic development, and child protection. World Vision works closely in partnership with United Nations agencies, including the World Food Programme, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, and UNICEF, on issues that have an impact on the safety, health, and developmental potential of children. In FY17, World Vision’s Syria Response effort helped at least 2,228,355 people, including 1,291,060 children, through humanitarian interventions which rendered immediate life-saving support to refugee households, reinforced the safeguarding of child rights in conflict zones, and facilitated the rehabilitation of traumatised children. At least 3.5 million people affected by the East Africa Hunger Crisis were also reached with food and water assistance, emergency health and nutrition interventions, and economic livelihood programmes for building long-term community resilience.
For more information, please visit www.worldvision.org.sg.
About World Vision’s 30 Hour Famine Campaign
World Vision’s 30 Hour Famine campaign began in 1971 in Alberta, Canada, when a group of students refused to sit back and do nothing while 36,000 hunger-related deaths happened worldwide daily. These students decided to start a local event in which they encouraged others to fast with them for 30 hours to raise awareness about global hunger and funds to support humanitarian programmes addressing food insecurity and malnutrition. After that initial event, their infectious passion caught the attention of students and leaders around the world who wanted to learn more about global hunger and their potential role in changing it. The 30 Hour Famine campaign has since spread to many other parts of the world, including Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand and the USA, and involves more than 1.5 million youth worldwide.
In Singapore, the 30 Hour Famine Camp places a unique emphasis on experiential learning to enable campers to become more empathetic and informed advocates for vulnerable children and families in the developing world. This is the 33rd year that World Vision Singapore will be organising this annual camp.
For more information, please visit www.worldvision.org.sg/30hfc.