SINGAPORE - Stay At Home, Singapore, the Covid-19 song which has proven quite the hit, has raised over $94,000 for families affected by the outbreak in less than a week since its release last Saturday (April 11).
It has now been remade with eight young singers joining the ensemble.
Riffing on the beloved National Day song Count On Me, Singapore sung by Clement Chow, the first version - which brought together 11 artists - garnered over 350,000 views in a week.
The second version released on Friday (April 17) includes sign language by deaf art and music practitioner Lily Goh, as well as a short message from 11 children from Child at Street 11, a charity and pre-school for children from diverse backgrounds.
The Stay At Home, Singapore campaign was launched to not only drive home the importance of safe distancing in the fight against the coronavirus, but also to help those affected by the outbreak due to job loss or pay cuts.
A partnership between The Straits Times and local music veteran Chow, the campaign is raising funds for The Straits Times School Pocket Money Fund (STSPMF) and The Business Times Budding Artists Fund (BTBAF).
More than $94,000 from over 480 donors has been raised for the two charities, which help children and youth from low-income families here.
The first version of Stay At Home, Singapore had some 302,000 views on ST's Facebook page, and 54,000 views on YouTube as of 9pm on Friday. The video received more than 5,300 reactions and 4,200 shares on Facebook.
One of the singers in the new video, 11-year-old Gisele Chiam, previously lent her talents to the ChildAid concert that canvassed funds for both STSPMF and BTBAF.
She decided to take part in this campaign as she wanted to help the families, many whom she had helped previously through ChildAid, to tide over this time.
"On top of that, I hope that the song will encourage all Singaporeans and residents to stay home, stay safe and stand united as a nation so that together we can stay strong and fight against the virus," said Gisele, a Primary 6 student.
Recording the song was a new challenge as she had to do it with the available gadgets at home, which took her and her mother about four hours.
"We're not very tech-savvy," said Gisele, laughing.
Another young singer, full-time musician Amni Musfirah, 25, said she got on board as she has a soft spot for the beneficiaries of the BTBAF. When she was a ChildAid performer back in 2008, 2009 and 2012, she got to know some of the beneficiaries.
"I learnt about the things they are going through, but at the same time they are very talented in their own areas. It would be great to raise money for their education and upbringing," said Ms Amni.
She also felt the song would be a good way to help people understand the message to stay home. "I believe music has always been the best way to spread an emotion or start a movement."
The other new singers are Syah Riszuan, Dominique Goh, Faith Ong, Zach Edwards, Sarah Edwards and Zoe Rowe.
The STSPMF is giving its beneficiaries extra help during thie period, disbursing an additional $50 to each of them in May with their monthly school pocket money.
About 10,000 primary to post-secondary school students will receive the payout. Around $500,000 in total will be given out, drawing from funds raised from the Stay At Home, Singapore campaign and other donors.
The largest donation to the STSPMF so far in support of the Stay At Home, Singapore campaign has been from Kulicke & Soffa, a firm that provides semiconductor packaging and electronic assembly solutions.
The company donated $50,000 directly.
Its vice-president of corporate strategy, Mr Cheam Tong Liang, said: "Education is important, especially for the children and youth. They are our future, and every one of them should be given equal opportunities to fulfil their dreams.
"We hope this donation will make a difference for our children and youth in these challenging times."
The Straits Times editor and editor-in-chief of Singapore Press Holdings' English/Malay/Tamil Media Group Warren Fernandez said: "We know that there are families which are struggling at this time. Their business might be down, or a family member might be out of work. So we would like to try to help. Our Board decided on making an additional contribution to all our beneficiaries, so this help can get to them quickly.
"We are helping within our means. We might have to do more down the road. So, this second video put together with the help of Clement and the young performers, will help us raise funds to do so.
"At the same time, it helps us spread the message of the continuing importance of everyone staying at home," he added.
"As the weeks drag on, and the weekend comes round, that gets harder to do, but remains no less critical. So, please, stay at home."
To donate, go here.