President's Challenge kicks off with $22k raised

The 17th edition of the President's Challenge kicked off yesterday with $22,000 raised through a choral concert held at the School of the Arts.

About 350 guests, including President Tony Tan Keng Yam, were treated to a performance by about 150 choristers in a concert organised by the Wild Empire Choral Group.

This year, the President's Challenge - an annual community outreach and fund-raising campaign - will support 52 organisations from various sectors, such as family social services, healthcare and eldercare.

The President's Challenge was initiated by the late former president S R Nathan in 2000.

Dr Tan, who launched the President's Challenge yesterday, said, since 2015, the campaign has been encouraging more arts projects with meaningful social objectives. He added that it will partner The Esplanade for the first time to bring the arts closer to kids with special needs, people with chronic illnesses and at-risk youth.

Dr Tan added that, like last year, 20 per cent of funds raised will be pledged to the Silver Volunteer Fund, to support initiatives that encourage the elderly to offer their time and talent for good causes.

He said: "As a national movement, President's Challenge supports a wide range of beneficiary organisations across numerous sectors to meet the needs of a growing nation. It is ultimately about building a caring, cohesive and inclusive society together."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 27, 2017, with the headline 'President's Challenge kicks off with $22k raised'. Print Edition | Subscribe