In May 2012, Singapore’s Housing & Development Board organized its first-ever Heartlands Youthoria event to educate children on how to be a good neighbor. Read on to understand why.
With 80% of the population living in public Housing & Development Board (HDB) flats, it is important for people, especially the next generation of Singaporeans, to learn how to get along with each other.
As such, HDB organized its inaugural Heartlands Youthoria! 2012 event designed to inform and educate the next generation of Singaporeans on the importance of maintaining good neighborly relations. The week-long event was held from 21 to 25 May 2012 at where else, but HDB’s very own Atrium in Toa Payoh Singapore.
One of the public displays was the future of HDB flats conceptualized and built from Lego pieces by primary and secondary school students. Also, through a localized version of The Amazing Race, student participants were encouraged to look at their neighbourhood and identify what were the different aspects of their town that they love the most.
But the event was not just a showcase. It was designed to be a part of a race and maze for children taking part in this educational yet fun contest.
In the address by Dr Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman, Mayor of Singapore’s South East District, he stressed that the urban heartland games that HDB has organized is about ‘endearing young Singaporeans to their own HDB towns, their physical spaces and the people.’
While this form of public education is not new in Singapore, it seems that the educational process by using games, contests, and exhibits in the heartlands has proven to be most effective in inoculating civic mindedness into our younger Singaporeans while they are still at school.
Do share if you see similar programs organized for the younger generation in your country or community.