Teck Ghee holds baby contest, PM Lee hopes to see more babies for Singapore next year

 Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
 Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong tours one of the carnival booths where mothers learn about baby massaging at the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong tours one of the carnival booths where mothers learn about baby massaging at the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
 Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016. ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong attends the Teck Ghee healthy baby contest held at Teck Ghee Community Centre on April 24, 2016.ST PHOTO: NEO XIAOBIN

SINGAPORE - The Teck Ghee Community Club was abuzz with fun, games, and the cries of dozens of babies on Sunday morning (April 24), as families living in the constituency took part in a Healthy Baby contest.

In all, 145 babies took part in the contest - almost double the number of participants last year.

This cheered their MP, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who said: "I hope by the time we have another baby show next year, there will be new participants!"

He was glad to note that as he toured the various activity booths, he saw some "akan datang - mothers who are already expecting".

And Mr Lee encouraged residents to have more children as "it is part of being a family and having a full life".

The Government, he added, had introduced several measures in this year's Budget to support families with children.

These include the First Step Grant, where parents will immediately get $3,000 in their newborn's Child Development Account (CDA).

The CDA is a special savings account where the Government matches parents' deposits up to a ceiling. It can be used for childcare fees and medical expenses.

There is also KidStart, a pilot programme for children from low-income families to get learning, development and health support.

The community club in Ang Mo Kio GRC also organised a carnival to let young children try out different activities. They built shapes using sand in a small pit, and dabbled with percussion instruments with their parents.

About six in 10 of the young tots in the contest on Sunday were SG50 babies, born last year when Singapore celebrated its Golden Jubilee.

Their parents helped contribute to the nation's record 33,793 Singapore citizen babies born last year, a 13-year high that exceeded even that of the 33,238 births in 2012, a Dragon Year which Chinese consider auspicious for births.

"Last year we had a bumper year," Mr Lee said, as he urged the parents in his constituency to help bump this figure up even further.

"I hope you all work harder and make further progress!"