Organised by an informal group of youth leaders, who include polytechnic and university students and national servicemen, the project called Creative Home involves a painted dustbin design competition open to all artists and art students below the age of 25 years old. Apart from the graffiti designs of the artists, the dustbins will carry messages urging the public to help protect the environment and keep Orchard Road clean.
Eighty-eight dustbins, provided by the National Environment Agency, will be painted and placed from near the junction of Orchard Road and Scotts Road to Le Meridien Hotel for at least three months, starting from early December 2007.
This will allow the public to admire the artwork on the dustbins and vote for their favourite dustbin on The Straits Times’ social networking website at www.stomp.com.sg from December till January 2008.
The project leader is Mr Faris Abdulkadir Basharahil, 19, an avid youth volunteer and Temasek Polytechnic hospitality and tourism student. The other members of his team include an NUS medical student, a student doing MBA on art history, a youth leader of @scape youth centre, an NTU mass communications student and a family service centre volunteer.
These youth volunteers are among those who are responding to the Government’s call to youths to step forward to make a difference to the lives of others. While working together in other youth projects, they have decided to come together to organise the Creative Home project.
Ms Ginney Lim, Executive Vice President of Legal & Corporate Communications at SPH, said: "The Creative Home project involves art, education, conservation and youth development, areas that SPH has been supporting as part of our corporate social responsibility. We hope this project can help encourage everyone to participate in environment protection, and instill in people a sense of responsibility and ownership towards the upkeep of not just Orchard Road but also the general environment."
Project leader Faris Abdulkadir Basharahil, a volunteer at Halogen Foundation, said the Creative Home project would take a holistic approach when educating youths and those taking part in the dustbin design competition. His team will organise workshops on character development, on how youths can contribute positively in mainstream participation in social and environment matters and the use of a softer approach towards solving environmental problems.
Said Mr Faris: "We hope to soften the image of a ’fine city’ by encouraging the public to use dustbins happily when they see the attractive artwork on them. We are aware that littering is not just simply a careless act - it is a serious problem that can lead to pollution and fatality, as in the case of killer litter.But we believe a soft and cheerful approach in encouraging people to keep Singapore clean and to cultivate a sense of ownership and care towards the city would go down better with the public. It may be easy to paint a dustbin but to turn it into a work of art and a vehicle to promote social change would be something challenging and refreshing."
"We also hope that the graffiti dustbins will add to the remaking of Orchard Road as a lively and fun leisure and shopping destination for Singaporeans and visitors," added Mr Faris.
Supporting the idea, Mrs Linda Kwan, General Manager of Paragon, said: "The appeal of our mall is all about good design, as in our products, mostly high-end and luxury fashion items. As we interact with the public who come to our mall to shop, we would also like to support activities that promote a clean and civil image at our doorstep. Just as we do our best to maintain our mall and keep it spick and span, we would also like to play our part in supporting the upkeep of public spaces in the heart of Orchard Road."
Calling for entries
The Creative Home organisers are now inviting artists and art students under the age of 25 years who care for the environment to take part in the contest. They can register at www.creativehome.youth.sg and at The Straits Times’ Stomp site - www.stomp.com.sg. They can also call Mr Faris at 9459 4004. The last day for registration is October 30, 2007.
There will be cash prizes for the winners.The first prize is $3,000, the second prize $1,500 and third prize $1,000. There will be seven consolation prizes of $100 each. Among the judges are well-known ’Mr Charity’ Gerard Ee, chairman of the Council for the Third Age; Mr Erzan Adam, a well-known art teacher and an award-winning artist; and Mr Sulhan Rawi, Art Editor of Berita Harian, a Malay-language daily of SPH.
The results of the competition will be announced in February 2007 in order to give the public enough time to take a good look at all the 88 dustbins in Orchard Road and vote for their favourite.
Adopt a dustbin at $500 each
Individuals and organisations can adopt a painted dustbin at $500 each. Their name and/or logo will be placed on the dustbin. Alternatively, they may adopt on behalf of a VWO. Those interested in adopting a dustbin or sponsoring/supporting the project in other ways can also call Mr Faris at 9459 4004.
SPH UnionWorks’ Radio 91.3FM is the supporting radio station for this project, which is receiving aid from The Young Changemakers programme funded by the Ministry of Community Development Youth and Sports. The project partners are Halogen Foundation; The Government’s National Environment Agency; *scape youth centre at Somerset Road and Home Club, an entertainment club.
For more information on Creative Home and pictures of painted dustbins, please contact:
Mr Faris Abdulkadir Basharahil
Organising Director, Creative Home
HP: 9459 4004
For more information on SPH’s sponsorship, please contact:
Ms Chen Jingwen
Singapore Press Holdings Ltd
HP: 9743 5503
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