SINGAPORE: The second edition of the Goh Chok Tong Enable Awards (GCTEA) saw 16 awardees honoured in a ceremony at the Istana on Thursday (Dec 3).
The GCTEA celebrates the achievements and promise of exceptional people with disabilities.
“As a society, we can do more to support persons with disabilities in their integration into the wider community,” said guest of honour President Halimah Yacob.
“Many of you have truly exemplified the spirit of positivity and resilience. You have shown that persons with disabilities can also contribute and bring value to organisations, businesses and our society. Let us continue to provide persons with disabilities with opportunities to pursue their talents and aspirations.”
The ceremony was also attended by special guest Emeritus Senior Minister (ESM) Goh Chok Tong and Minister for Social and Family Development Masagos Zulkifli.
Now in its second year, the GCTEA saw more awardees, up from the 13 in its first edition. The awards were launched in 2019 by ESM Goh, who is the patron of the Mediacorp Enable Fund (MEF).
“Through these awards, we want to show the world what our persons with disabilities can achieve, when given the opportunity to prove themselves,” said ESM Goh.
“We want to encourage more Singaporeans to welcome and integrate them in the community and in the workplace.”
Four people, aged 29 to 76, were given the GCT Enable Award (UBS Achievement), which celebrates people with disabilities who have made significant achievements in their own fields and serve as an inspiration to others. They received S$10,000 each.
In addition, S$5,000 was given to to recognise the efforts made by a nominating organisation – Very Special Arts – which nominated established pianist Azariah Tan.
Despite his hearing impairment, Dr Tan, the youngest awardee of this category at 29, has given inspirational talks and performances at fundraising concerts.
Twelve people were awarded the GCT Enable Award (UBS Promise), in recognition for their potential and commitment to serve the community.
The awardees, aged 14 to 35, received S$5,000 each.
“It is our honour to acknowledge the achievements and promise of these extraordinary individuals who are able to overcome their challenges, accomplish personal achievements and be a positive driver of change and inspiration,” said Mr Edmund Koh, President of Asia Pacific, UBS.
“Each and every one of the finalists are incredibly inspiring and extremely deserving of this award. A common denominator amongst all of them is their determination to overcome their difficulties and still care for their community.
“This quality is even more important during this time of the pandemic where they inspire us to continue to be resilient, courageous and stand united to help each other,” Mr Koh added.
Chief executive officer of Mediacorp Tham Loke Kheng said, “The awards recognises those who had overcome great challenges to accomplish incredible personal achievements and positively impact our communities. We hope that their grit and determination will continue to inspire others to maximise their potential in their respective fields.”
The awards is an initiative of the MEF, a community fund administered by SG Enable, with Mediacorp as its official media partner.
The awards is supported by the Singapore Totalisator Board (Tote Board) as the founding sponsor and UBS Singapore as the principal sponsor, and comprise two categories: GCTEA (UBS Achievement) and GCTEA (UBS Promise).
The MEF is a charity fund that aims to help build a society where persons with disabilities are recognised for their abilities and lead full, socially integrated lives.