Singapore, 27 September 2015 – The Industrial & Services Co-operative Society Ltd (ISCOS), a co-operative which provides social assistance to ex-offenders and their families, organised its first ever “Chasing Your Dream” event today. In collaboration with Singapore Motor Sports Association (SMSA) and Valencia Club de Fútbol (Valencia CF), the event gathered a total of 40 sports cars and luxury cars to offer an exclusive 30-minute ride to beneficiaries of the Yellow Ribbon Fund-ISCOS Fairy Godparent Programme (FGP), flagged off from Big Splash at East Coast Park.
In his opening address, the Guest-of-Honour, Mr Seah Kian Peng, Deputy Speaker of Parliament and Member of Parliament, Marine Parade GRC, said, “In light of the Singapore Formula One (F1) Grand Prix night race which concluded last week, this is a chance for the young ones to get a taste of the F1 experience. Cars and powerful machines have a special call to us – hopefully will kindle an interest in science among the young people, to work hard and pursue their dreams.
In many instances, life is like a race. Most importantly, we must always remember that the focus is not about how you start the race, but how you finish it.”
The impressive convoy, which came in the array of Ferrari, Maserati, Porsche, Nissan GT-R and other luxury brands, received overwhelming response from the FGP beneficiaries, whose ages range from 9 to 16 years. Nicely decked out in Valencia CF jerseys, the participants stood in awe and delight as they watched the cars lining up at the starting point, all ready for flag-off.
“When we first conceptualise this initiative with ISCOS, the main objective is to convey a message of hope to the beneficiaries, thereby creating a lasting positive experience for the participants. Ourvolunteer drivers are glad to be able to contribute and have enjoyed themselves too at the event,”said Mr Leslie Chang, President of SMSA, which played a major role in securing the participating cars for today’s event.
One of the key sponsors was Spanish football giants, Valencia Club de Futbol, owned by Singaporean billionaire, Peter Lim. The club’s Commercial and Marketing Director, Peter Draper, said, “This is our first community project in Singapore since the recent opening of our Asia office. ISCOS was keen to have us on board because of the inspiring story of our owner who is also a car enthusiast. He is the epitome of how a kid with a humble start in life can make his dreams a reality.”
For many beneficiaries, the event stretched beyond a fun-filled morning and became a once-in-a-lifetime experience to remember.
One participant, Fariq*, 16 said, “Being an avid motorsports fan, this is truly a dream come true. What have I learnt from today’s experience? (It is) that all is possible once I set my eyes on my dreams and strive hard for greater heights. I am really thankful to be given this opportunity and I hope to become a marine engineer one day.”
After the car ride, the participants head down to another joyride at the Singapore Flyer with their families, before concluding the event with a sumptuous lunch at the Royal Palm Restaurant.
A total of 42 beneficiaries under the Fairy Godparent Programme were excited to experience an exclusive car ride in sports and luxury cars.
An FGP beneficiary was all smiles on board a Ferrari 430 Spider.
The “Chasing Your Dream” event is one of the activities launched under FGP a programme targeted at underprivileged children in the areas of education and family support which aims to break the cycle of inter-generational offending.
*Name has been altered to protect the beneficiary.
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Since 1989, ISCOS has been extending friendship and support to ex-offenders and their families so that they can lead meaningful and productive lives. Together with the CARE Network/Yellow Ribbon Project partners, ISCOS takes an active role in engaging the community to help ex-offenders and their families gain a foothold in the society.
As a social Co-operative for ex-offenders under the purview of the Ministry of Home Affairs, our programmes and services are geared towards enhancing the skills level of our beneficiaries, connecting them with supportive employers, providing social support through positive peer groups and mentors, building stronger family units, as well as extending academic assistance to their children in order to break the cycle of intergenerational offending.
About Singapore Motor Sports Association (SMSA)
The Singapore Motor Sports Association was founded on 24 May 1969 through the amalgamation of the Forces Driving Club and the Singapore Motor Club. Known as the Singapore Motor Sports Club (SMSC) at its inception, the Club changed its status to an Association in 1996, with the assistance and advice of the Singapore Sports Council, to be known as Singapore Motor Sports Association (SMSA). SMSA is a non-profit organisation registered with the Registrar of Societies and Associations in Singapore.
SMSA is affiliated to international motor sports governing bodies such as the Federation Internationale De L’Automobile, (FIA), Commission Internationale De Karting-FIA (CIK-FIA), Federation Internationale De Motocyclisme (FIM). Collectively, these organizations control every aspect of motor sports in the international arena. These affiliations, together with recognition from the Singapore Sports Council as the National Sporting Association (NSA) for motor sports, comes with great responsibilities, and that is to promote motor sports in Singapore.
About Valencia Club de Fútbol (CF)
Valencia CF is one of the most successful and well-known football clubs in the world. It is placed in the twelfth position of the UEFA rankings for club competitions, ahead of Manchester City, Borussia Dortmund, Ajax, AC Milan, and Juventus. The third largest club in Spain finished fourth in the 2014/15 La Liga season, and successfully qualified for the 2015/16 Champions League group stage.
Founded in 1919, Valencia CF have won more than 20 major titles, including six La Liga Championships, seven Copa del Rey trophies, one Spanish Supercup, three UEFA Cups, one UEFA Cup Winners Cup and two UEFA Supercups. The club reached seven major European finals, including two consecutive UEFA Champions League finals in 2000 and 2001.