Speaker's photos aid Yellow Ribbon Fund

Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin with (from far left) Singapore Corporation of Rehabilitative Enterprises board member Abdul Rohim Sarip and Commissioner of Prisons Desmond Chin at the Yellow Ribbon Appreciation Dinner yesterday.
Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin with (from far left) Singapore Corporation of Rehabilitative Enterprises board member Abdul Rohim Sarip and Commissioner of Prisons Desmond Chin at the Yellow Ribbon Appreciation Dinner yesterday.PHOTO: BERITA HARIAN

When he was in New York in December 2007, Speaker of Parliament Tan Chuan-Jin chanced upon Central Park blanketed in snow and took a photo.

"That was special to me because it was the first time my children saw snow. It was magical to have the whole park lit up in the night," said Mr Tan, a hobbyist photographer.

Yesterday , the photo and a black-and-white image taken in Amsterdam were put up for silent auction at the annual Yellow Ribbon Appreciation Dinner.

While Mr Tan had taken part in previous Yellow Ribbon initiatives, this was the first time he had contributed to the Yellow Ribbon Fund through his hobby.

Taken from his 2014 photography book, The World We Live In, the metallic prints measured 100cm by 60cm and had a starting bid of $10,000. Another 25 metallic prints from his personal collection were also up for sale. They measure 66cm by 44cm and are available till next month at $5,888 each.

The silent auction and sale of seven photographs contributed to the $100,000 raised for the fund, which supports inmates and former offenders through rehabilitation and reintegration programmes.

In a speech, Mr Tan said the fund has reached out to over 6,000 beneficiaries and disbursed more than $11 million since its inception in 2004. "As Singaporeans, we must go beyond pursuing the tangible comforts or economic success. We can think about what we can do to make society better," he added.

About 220 people attended yesterday's event at the Suntec convention centre.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 01, 2017, with the headline 'Speaker's photos aid Yellow Ribbon Fund'. Print Edition | Subscribe