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Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame Honors Ten Outstanding Women on International Women’s Day

Women's Tabloid News Desk
Women's Tabloid News Desk

In celebration of International Women’s Day, the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame (SWHF) has bestowed recognition upon ten remarkable women who have made significant contributions to Singaporean society. From athletics to education, ecology to the creative industries, this year’s inductees represent a diverse array of fields and accomplishments.

Among the distinguished individuals honored this year is Shanti Pereira, Singapore’s esteemed sprint queen and national hero, celebrated for her remarkable career on the tracks. Tan See Lai, an innovative educational TV producer and newsreader, has left an indelible mark on Singaporean media. Renowned humour writer Sylvia Toh Paik Choo, affectionately known as the “Grandmother of Singlish,” has been honored for her advocacy of Singapore’s unique language.

Linda Locke, an innovator in the Asian creative sector, has been recognized for her groundbreaking work that has paved the way for others. Mary Ann Tsao, a pioneer in the field of effective longevity, serves as an inspiration for happy and healthy aging. The writings of Hadijah Rahmat, a distinguished poet, novelist, and educator, continue to motivate and uplift those around her.

Kirtida Mekani, a vocal advocate for conservation and sustainability, has been lauded for her unwavering commitment to environmentalism. Grace Young-Diao, a renowned athlete and philanthropist, has demonstrated her dedication to various causes, including bowling. Sim Phei Sunn and Vincere Zeng, outstanding mountaineers, have made history as the first women from Singapore to conquer the summits of Everest and K2.

The induction ceremony, held at the Fullerton Hotel, was graced by the presence of President Tharman Shanmugaratnam and his spouse, Ms. Jane Ittogi, patron of the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO). Each inductee or their representative was presented with “The Flame,” a symbolic glass trophy representing the eternal spirit of the Hall of Fame and the legacy passed down through generations.

Project Awesome: Inspiring Future Generations

In 2014, the SCWO established the Hall of Fame to honor past achievements and inspire present and future generations. Central to this mission is Project Awesome, an educational outreach program aimed at bringing the stories of extraordinary women to life. Through the distribution of the book “Awesome Women of Singapore” to schools, as well as workshops, speeches, and exhibitions, Project Awesome seeks to educate and empower Singaporean youth.

The Hour Glass, a Singaporean watchmaker, has recently partnered with the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame and Project Awesome, committing $1.2 million over three years to support these initiatives. This generous contribution will enable the Hall of Fame to expand its outreach programs and reach more young people.

Dr. Henry Tay, Executive Chairman of The Hour Glass, emphasized the importance of supporting initiatives that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion. He expressed hope that more Singaporean companies would join in efforts to close the gender gap and empower individuals to achieve their fullest potential.

Addressing Gender Inequity: A Call to Action

Junie Foo, President of SCWO, underscored the importance of addressing gender inequity and removing systemic barriers. While acknowledging achievements, she emphasized the need for ongoing efforts to shift perspectives and create a fairer future. Projects like Project Awesome and advocacy for the renaming of roads and parks to honor notable women play a crucial role in recognizing and celebrating the contributions of women to society.

“We proposed that an initial 10 roads or places be named after women, with more to be considered later, and we identified the 10 women in the Hall of Fame that we think should be the first to be honoured and remembered in this way. That our heroes in the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame be commemorated this way is more than just our dream. It is our firm belief that this is an important step for us to take as a nation if we are to achieve gender equality. We need to do more, a lot more, to show that women and men are equal, that as a society we are truly committed to Equal Space, Equal Voice, Equal Worth, ” said Ms. Foo.

As Singapore continues its journey towards gender equality, initiatives like the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame and Project Awesome serve as beacons of inspiration and progress, inspiring future generations to dream big and achieve greatness.

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