Regular visitors to REACH’s website will be all too familiar with contributors such as “Raymond Lo Wan Mou”, “Piaofu”, “Lai CF” and “Om Nath Panday”. While many of us may have read their postings or even exchanged thoughts and suggestions with them on REACH’s blogs and discussion forums, most of us may not have had the chance to put a face to these names, and get to know the person behind the contributions and postings.
However, on 7th January 2009, this became possible, at the Singapore Flyer no less. These active and loyal feedback contributors were specially invited to the REACH Contributors’ Appreciation Lunch hosted by Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports Dr Vivian Balakrishnan and REACH Chairman Dr Amy Khor. The Appreciation Lunch was well-received, with over 100 REACH Panel Members, Policy Study Workgroups (PSW) members, Junior REACH Ambassadors (JRAs), and of course, regular feedback contributors in attendance.
At the appreciation lunch, Dr Amy Khor thanked feedback contributors for their invaluable contribution and feedback. Minister Dr Vivian Balakrishnan also gave a short speech, during which he stressed three “I”s in the citizen engagement process:
- Information - Sufficient, credible and unbiased information, to deepen citizens' understanding of the issues at hand;
- Interaction – Making use of REACH platforms to respond quickly and enhance interaction, especially on major or more important issues.
- Involvement - Increasing the number of Singaporeans who feel that they have participated in nation-building, problem-solving and creating the future.
Minister addressing the contributors
Also at the Appreciation Lunch, we launched two new initiatives - in the form of the Feedback Facilitator (F2) programme to facilitate greater engagement of heartlanders, and a new Youth Vibes webpage.
The five new F2 appointees beamed with pride as they received their letters of appointment from Dr Amy Khor. Our new Feedback Facilitators are:
Mr David Liew Tuck Yin from the Central Singapore District
Tan Jack Thian from the Southeast District
Mr Zen Koh Teck Hong from the Southwest District
Mr Michael Tan from the Northeast District
Mdm Leow Gek Woo from the Northwest District (Representing Mdm Kalyani d/o Ramasamy)
Introducing "Youth Vibes" and Minister viewing the "Youth Vibes" webpage
Following the appointment of the F2, two of our JRAs – Kwan Jin Yao and Leonard Royce Yong from Hwa Chong Institution and Victoria Junior College respectively, presented the new “Youth Vibes” webpage to guests. “Youth Vibes” (www.reach.gov.sg/youthvibes) is an interactive webpage created as part of REACH’s commitment to engage youths in the feedback process.
We hope that through this new “for youth, by youth” webpage, youths will find that they have a cool avenue to express their opinions on issues that matter to them, and that the level of awareness of national issues among youths will be raised.
We are heartened by the strong support shown by our active contributors and look forward to meeting more of our contributors at future REACH events!
Minister and Dr Khor sharing a moment with Mr Raymond Lo and Mr Soh Yi Da
REACH’s most senior contributor – Mr Ron Chandran Dudley
Our contributors enjoying a sumptuous lunch
Smiles all around