If the recently concluded teaser event of GetActive! Singapore is anything to go by, then its second edition, set to return from 29th July to 9th August this year in the lead-up to National Day, will be a milestone celebration of diversity and sport’s capacity to bring people together.
Dubbed GetActive! @ Sentosa, Sunday’s prelude was organised in conjunction with the Health Promotion Board (HPB)-ActiveSG Active Family programme Thrillogy at Sentosa. It featured several sports and fitness activities, including ultimate frisbee, beach volleyball, athletics, football, tennis, wheelchair basketball, and an outdoor adventure race.
With a whole range of programmes, the mid-afternoon sun did nothing to deter the youths, families, corporate partners, volunteers, and athletes who had come out to join in the fun and forge new bonds at Sentosa.
A member of public trying out mini tennis offered by the ActiveSG Tennis Academy on Palawan Green, Sentosa. Photo: SportSG
Minister of Culture, Community, and Youth Grace Fu, too, stopped by to try out the various activities. Reflecting on the success of last year’s Get Active! Singapore, she enthused: “It was a very good start last year. We saw many people stepping forward, either participating in the sports that they liked best, or just trying something new.”
“We’d like them to pick up something they’re interested in, we’d like them to be active, and we’d like them to socialise,” she continued.
Accompanying her at Sentosa were Chief Executive Officer of Health Promotion Board and board member of Sport Singapore Zee Yoong Kang, Chairperson of Sport Singapore Richard Seow, Chief Executive Officer of Sport Singapore Lim Teck Yin, and Chief Executive Officer of Sentosa Development Corporation Quek Swee Kuan.
Ultimate (frisbee) action on Palawan Beach, Sentosa, one of the highlights of Get Active! @ Sentosa over the March school holidays. Photo: SportSG
As Lim concurred in a statement: “Our natural instincts to play and make friends will enrich the shared experiences that strengthen our sense of togetherness and community in Singapore.”
And it certainly was a heart-warming sight, with people across different ages and abilities playing alongside each other.
Clarence Lam had joined the day’s activities with his family, on his son’s birthday. He shared that the young boy, who was enjoying a kick-about with ActiveSG Football Academy principal Aleksander Duric and a group of other children, did not know anyone there but was having fun nevertheless.
Minister Grace Fu tries her hands at the sport of Ultimate (frisbee) with mascot Nila in attendance. Photo: SportSG
“This GetActive! initiative is a good chance for everyone to all come out and enjoy sports together on a weekend. It has expanded from last year. It’s definitely more inclusive now, getting everyone from all walks of life to participate in sports,” he added.
At the other end of the age spectrum were the older folk, who took part in the activities alongside the younger ones. 75-year-old Team Nila volunteer Andrew Yeong, who was helping to facilitate the games with his wife Kuan Kim Kian, also professed that the day’s programme was a good way for people to mingle with groups they might not typically associate with in their everyday lives.
“I think it’s a healthy programme for people young and old! The children here are really enjoying themselves. Coming here, we are also able to make more friends,” Yeong expressed.
“If we can, we will surely be there as volunteers for GetActive! Singapore during the National Day period!” he said.
Children having fun with Sporting Singapore mascot Nila at Get Active! @ Sentosa. Photo: SportSG
With the success and popularity of this Sentosa version, both participants and volunteers alike are definitely looking forward to the full suite of Get Active! Singapore activities come 29 July, where up to 24 sports competitions, including six para sports, will be launched.
Open to the public, these sports will be played in three groups: the National Corporate Games, National Masters Games, and National Youth Games.
As Minister Fu shared: “I think that’s the whole idea of [this initiative] – to allow Singaporeans, for those 10 days before National Day, to come and celebrate the occasion through sports!”