Additional Platforms and Opportunities for Arts & Cultural Exchanges created for Underprivileged Children from Singapore, Malaysia and Japan!
Singapore, 29 November 2006 – Having raised close to $500,000 and benefited more than 500 underprivileged children in just 18 months since The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (BT BAF) was officially launched in Singapore by The Arts House at the Old Parliament, the Fund has prompted two social entrepreneurs to set up a fund that shares the same vision, mission and work of the BT BAF in Japan and Malaysia, making it possibly the first Singapore-registered charity to be able to reach out and create an impact in such a way upon another culture and country! The Arts House will sign a Memorandum of Understanding with Mr. Akira Ishigaki of Craftarts Co. on 6 December 2006 during Spotlight Singapore in Tokyo 2006, and with Mr. Ralph Lim, Vice President of The Kiwanis Club of Petaling Jaya and founder of The Smile Team a local volunteer charity group, on the 27 January 2007 at Sheraton Subang Hotel & Towers, Malaysia.
Initiated by The Arts House and adopted by The Business Times, BT BAF aims to enable children between the ages of five to 12 years old distanced by socio-economic circumstances to pursue an arts education in music, dance, drama and visual arts. The Fund originated from a strong conviction that no child with strong interest and artistic potential should be deprived of the opportunity to develop his or her talents because he or she is economically disadvantaged.
Mr. Colin Goh, General Manager of The Arts House said: “This is indeed great news for us and testament that BT BAF has gained regional recognition and attention! It is very encouraging that this unique fund has caught the attention of like-minded partners in Japan and Malaysia and we hope that through the establishment of the Budding Artists Fund in these two countries, more corporations will come forward to benefit thousands and thousands of children each year through the cultivation of set skills in the creative and arts industry.”
The expansion of the Fund in Japan and Malaysia will create additional platforms for the beneficiaries since they can then have the opportunity to perform overseas and hence encourage greater appreciation of each others’ culture and heritage through such a borderless arts and creativity exchange programme.
Mr. Akira Ishigaki, Representative Director of Craftarts Co. and former General Director of Tokyo Performing Arts Market (1995 – 2004) said: “When I first heard of the BT BAF that The Arts House has initiated, I thought to myself, how good it is if underprivileged children in Japan can also gain from such a well-meaning fund that seeks to improve their social and economical situations through the arts! While the basic needs of underprivileged children are being taken care of by other charities in Japan, the Budding Artists Fund is an additional benefit that will not just provide them with vocational skills but also build up their self-esteem so as to raise them on par, if not higher, than others in society.”
Mr. Ralph Lim, Vice President of The Kiwanis Club of Petaling Jaya said: “The Budding Artists Fund is an excellent platform for talented children, who will otherwise not have the opportunities to develop their skills because they are distanced by socio-economic means, to gain experience and exposure through the arts not just in Malaysia but also in the region! Our objective is to do our very best to help these children in Malaysia to develop their skills sufficiently so that they can realise their maximum potential and succeed as an artist in their chosen field, and eventually come back to help us in the development of further programmes for the Fund.”
At the same time, The Arts House is also developing a curriculum of arts enrichment courses for the BuddingArtistsAcademy that is to be launched in 2007 to put in place a more structured training programme which will benefit children between four to 12 years old in Singapore. The Academy will focus on developing their talents and creativity as well as training these children with the necessary skills and giving them the exposure and experience so as to better prepare them for the future.
The Business Times Budding Artists Fund
Initiated by The Arts House, The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (BT BAF) aims to enable children between the ages of four to 12 years distanced by socio-economic circumstances to pursue their aspirations to develop artistic talents in music, dance, theatre, visual arts and theatre production. The Fund originated from a strong conviction that no child with strong interest and artistic potential should be deprived of the opportunity to develop his or her talents because he or she is economically disadvantaged. For further information, please visit www.theartshouse.com.sg/btbaf/index.htm.
The Arts House at the Old Parliament
Officially opened on 26 March 2004, The Arts House at the Old Parliament is the only gazetted historic government building which has been designated as an arts and heritage venue. The 180-year-old national monument was originally built in 1827 as a home for a Scottish merchant but subsequently became Singapore’s first Court House and former Parliament House. The Arts House is now a multidisciplinary arts centre that offers visitors the opportunity to create their own mix of activities from a broad spectrum of engaging, contemporary arts events, entertainment and lifestyle options. The Arts House is managed by The Old Parliament House Limited, a not-for-profit full-service arts management company limited by guarantee. For further information, please visit www.theartshouse.com.sg.
For media queries, please contact
See Ling Ling
Manager, Marketing Communications
The Old Parliament House Limited;
1 Old Parliament Lane
Tel: 65 6332 6903
Mobile: 65 9771 0320