Tuesday, April 21, 2009

One Singapore librarian's quest to raise $200,000 for The Spastic Children's Association (part 1)

Arrgh. I'm sorry I didn't post this earlier.

A few months ago, my librarian colleague, Mr. Dennis Kweh, hatched the idea of raising funds for the Spastic Children's Association (Singapore).

By traveling 200km in a power wheelchair, within Singapore over three days.

He approached START Centre, who agreed to be the event organiser.

His "Adventure 200" starts today (ends on 23 Apr 09). I'll post more pictures and videos soon.

This is Dennis' open letter.
ADVENTURE 200 Singapore – 1 Person, 1Metre, 1 Dollar, 1 at a timeI am Dennis Kweh and I am a librarian.

I suffered from a rare genetic disorder Morquio Brailsford Disease, Spinal Sclerosis and blinded on one eye due to Glaucoma. I count myself among the fortunate few who lived a respectful and meaningful life. Now at 47 years old, I hope to return to the society by reaching out to help fellow disabled in this Adventure200 challenge in April 2009.

I plan to travel 200km over 3 days (21-23 Apr09) within Singapore on a battery powered wheelchair, covering places like East Coast Park, MacRitchie Nature Reserves, Orchard, Shenton Way, HortParks, South Bouna Vista Rd etc.

I will be on the road continuously for at least 10 hours a day to achieve this aim of covering 200km. To make this quest even more meaningful, I hope to be able to raise S$1 for every meter I travelled.

If I am successful in this quest, I will be able to raise S$200,000 for the Spastic Children's Association of Singapore (SCAS) to help people with cerebral palsy under their care.

SCAS was chosen as the beneficiary due to its specialized intervention and rehabilitative programs for cerebral palsy in Singapore. Cerebral palsy (CP) is an umbrella term encompassing a group of non-progressive, non-contagious diseases that cause physical disability in human development. While cerebral palsy is a physically crippling disease, it is not a humanly crippling disease. The human spirit will not be discouraged.

With assistive technology gadgets, they empower the person with greater confidence, enhance independence and improve abilities. Take the good example of Stephen Hawkings, who is not hampered by his disability to be one of the finest scientists in this century.

On a personal level, I cannot just keep still and go about my daily life when I have seen what cerebral palsy patients went through during one of my visits to SCAS. Thus, I have made a personal challenge to do something for them and improve their lives through my wheelchair marathon.

The fundraising of this project will be managed by the START Centre Pte Ltd who has graciously come forward to join me in this worthy cause by offering their services free of charge. Your donations will go directly to the Spastic Children's Association of Singapore

I believe being disabled is no barrier to help other people with disabilities. I hope to be able to do my part, and despite the current belt tightening economic situation, I hope you will join me in this good cause and give generously or within your means.

Your donation will mean a lot for them as well as for me.

More at the event website - www.a200.sg (4 Mar Press Release).

See also the earlier coverage from The Straits Times, TODAYonline, more press coverage.

OK, right after I hit the SEND button, I've got to rush to meet a colleague who's driving a few of us to interview Dennis at his first night stop.

More updates to follow.

[Next: Part 2]

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