Rare Disorders Society of Singapore Sponsors Children's Concert with 2011 PAL Award Funds

Cara Hesse | July 24, 2012

It’s amazing what can be accomplished with just a small infusion of funds. The Rare Disorders Society of Singapore (www.rdss.org.sg/) had only been established a few months before applying for their first PAL Award. Like any young organization, they needed to raise funds in order to begin fulfilling their mission to support rare disease patients throughout Singapore. So they applied for the PAL Award, not knowing what to expect.

The RDSS wanted to sponsor a children’s concert in a local hospital that would serve as the official launch of their organization and would also raise awareness and funds for the lysosomal storage community. As RDSS Vice President, Kenneth Mah, explained in the PAL proposal, Singapore is ranked 6th in the World Health Organization's ranking of the world's health systems, yet LSD patients receive no support under the current healthcare system. The RDSS proposal clearly demonstrated the impact, creativity and feasibility of the project, and as a result the RDSS was awarded an Empowerment PAL Award grant of $5,000.

The piano concert was a huge success and ultimately raised $20,000 (see photos below). More than 200 tickets were sold and all proceeds were donated to KK Women and Children’s Hospital Heath Endowment Fund. Adding to the excitement, reports of the event appeared on local TV stations, newspapers and radio and even received media coverage from one of the most famous social and political websites in Singapore, TheOnLineCitizen.

Members of parliament and well known celebrities attended the concert and promoted the event. Among the performers was a 5-year-old boy with Gaucher disease, and the event was closed with the dedication of a song to a Pompe baby girl who passed away a month earlier.

Upon receiving the PAL Award for the children’s piano concert, Kenneth Mah noted, “We are especially ecstatic and over-whelmed, on top of being pleasantly surprised, to receive a PAL Award as many patient organizations took part in the contest. We know that there are many patient organizations more established than us and that are made up of talents from all walks of life. We are glad to receive such recognition as it serves as a form of confirmation that our plans will help to propel the patient organization into the next quantum.”

                              
Photos from left: The crowded auditorium at the RDSS Children's Piano Concert; and RDSS President, Patricia Ng, welcoming attendees at the event

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