27 May 2018
11 Ramadhan 1439
As the full moon approached in the month of Ramadan, the Indian Muslim Social Service Association (IMSSA) jointly conducted its second annual Harmony Iftar at Marine Parade Cluster, Kampong Ubi Community Centre on 27th May 2018 with Marine Parade GRC, MacPherson and Mountbatten SMCs’ MAECs and People’s Association (PA) MESRA. The event was also graciously supported by South East CDC, Integration & Naturalisation Champions (INCs), PUB and Marigold. Foremostly, our heartfelt thanks goes to all our collaborators, supporters and sponsors. Surely, this event would not have been possible without their contribution and that of our working committee, comprising representatives from the seven CCs’ MAECs.
To say that the event was successful may be too cursory for every Iftar event is a culmination of a lot of hard work. Everyone involved had a part to play in the wide social fabric that held the event together. It was indeed very heartening to observe that we were able to reach out and serve our society in this unified way. For that, once again, IMSSA thanks everyone for their never-ending commitment and zest to make it happen.
In this Harmony Iftar, IMSSA was delighted to receive Speaker of Parliament Mr Tan Chuan Jin, Emeritus Senior Minister Mr Goh Chok Tong, Grassroots Advisers for Marine Parade GRC Associate Professor Fatimah Lateef, Mr Edwin Tong Chun Fai, Mr Seah Kian Peng, Grassroots Adviser for Mountbatten Mr Lim Biow Chuan and Grassroots Adviser for MacPherson Mdm Tin Pei Ling as our host advisers. We were also glad to serve our residents from the various estates of Marine Parade GRC, MacPherson and Mountbatten SMCs, friends, and families from IMSSA.
Certainly, the goal of every Harmony Iftar is to provide a platform for youth to gather and volunteer for our community while at the same time, reach out to include the less fortunate amongst us. We were ecstatic to know that this goal was achieved in this Iftar. An overwhelming 120 volunteers from Victoria Junior College (VJC) and students from Madrasah Wak Tanjong came forward to lend a helping hand to work together in serving others. It was a beautiful sight to observe all races and religions come together to work for a common universal cause. That is what the Harmony Iftar is all about! Although the experience of fasting and breaking fast is a religious one, the true aim was to allow our youth to embrace the spirit of giving, a trait that is highly encouraged to be practiced in the month of Ramadan and beyond.
True to the spirit of giving, IMSSA had launched a fundraiser prior to the event, with donations from friends and families of IMSSA and even from strangers. These funds were then distributed to about 350 invited less-privileged families in the form of food supplies and vouchers. We hope that whatever we were able to provide goes a long way for them.
By the end of the day, an estimated collective total of 3,500 people were served. Every guest was treated to a wonderful mix of food consisting of nasi lemak, chicken rendang, tasty porridge, keema bun, samosas, lychees, spaghetti, dates and kueh. Marigold and PUB had kindly sponsored drinks to cater to both the young and the old. The smiles and gratification from our guests made the food preparation that started early in the morning all worthwhile. Certainly, this year’s menu was a hit amongst everyone.
This Harmony Iftar at Marine Parade Cluster turned out to be a special one in that we had managed to reach out to a different community of residents in Singapore by having it at a new venue, Kampong Ubi Community Centre, which is near the heart of the Malay Community. We had hoped that many individuals would connect, revive old relationships and foster new ones through this move. Secondly, we extended our environmentally-friendly initiative from last Iftar to include a day-long activity schedule for young kids to learn more about protecting our Earth through our collaboration with NEA and PUB. The recycling of NEWater bottles was undertaken in this iftar too. Lastly, the ambience of the event was ramped up for our guests to make it all the more special. A stunning display of 1,200 balloons, lanterns, stars and rosettes filled the atmosphere of the tentage. It is our hope that we continue to improve and reach out to as many people as we can.
Alhamdulillah for what was achieved and insha Allah for more improvements to come!