Women in Singapore now have an orchid named after them, in a move by the People's Action Party's (PAP) Women's Wing to pay tribute to mothers and thank them for their contributions to nation building.
To mark the occasion, $200,000 was donated to 10 charities with a focus on women in Singapore through the PAP Community Foundation. These included the Breast Cancer Foundation, Babes Pregnancy Crisis Support and Domestic Employees Welfare Fund.
The orchid was unveiled by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong at the PAP Women's Wing's Bicentennial Tribute to Mothers at the Mandarin Orchard hotel yesterday.
The purple orchid was named Aranda Mothers Of Singapore. It is a hybrid of the Aranda Christine and Vanda Varut Fuchsia.
Its ancestry includes an orchid that has been native to Singapore since the 19th century.
More than 600 activists and guests attended the event.
Mrs Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower and chairman of the PAP Women's Wing, said: "Orchids are often named for very important persons or dignitaries. What we hope to achieve by doing this is to say to all the mothers here in Singapore that you are special, very important and now you have an orchid you can proudly call your own.
"Families are the basic building blocks of our society and mothers are the superglue holding families together that keep our society strong."
She added that mothers have contributed to Singapore's history and helped in reconstruction after the war. They also stepped into new jobs after independence and as the economy developed.
"As children, let us never forget the sacrifices of our mothers. And always remember our mothers' efforts to bring joy to our lives," she said.
PM Lee wished the guests happy Mother's Day when he unveiled the orchid.
Said Mrs Teo: "(The orchid) symbolises the nurturing and vibrant character of mothers in Singapore. We hope to inspire successive generations of mothers here."