Project Ki-Wee!, short for Kids and Us Having Fun, partnered nEbO and Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s Radio Heatwave to present the alternative-schooling group from Boys’ Town an opportunity to learn new things outside their classrooms and to inculcate openness and self-confidence in the boys.
On the morning of March 22, our team comprising seven undergraduates from the Singapore Management University, arrived at Boys’ Town feeling rather nervous and unsure of what to expect. We were afraid that the boys might not be comfortable with our presence there. However, things turned out differently and in fact, by lunch all of us were having a really pleasant time exchanging stories and getting to know each other better. I was sitting with a little boy who has just turned 13. He impressed me with his humor and eagerness to learn. Laughter burst out often, sweeping away all the awkwardness of the first meeting between us.
After lunch, a bus ferried all of us to Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s School of Film and Media Studies (FMS), where the boys learnt about radio and how to present on air. The first lesson was about the history of radio in Singapore. Though some of the boys appeared disinterested, I could see that they were putting in effort to behave properly. Following which, the boys went on a tour of the radio and television broadcast studios present in FMS. I could really see the enthusiasm sparkle in the boys’ eyes when they saw the different high-tech gadgets and learnt that they had a chance to operate some of the equipment. Their interest to learn really kept my team and I in high spirits throughout the whole journey.
However, the most exciting part of the day was when the boys got a taste of what it is like to be a deejay. We made our way to Radio Heatwave’s broadcast studio and each of them had an opportunity to present their own mini radio show where they had a chance to select the songs to play, learnt how to back announce their songs, introduced themselves and their show name, briefly talked about a topic of interest and introduced the upcoming songs. This was probably the first time they had to present in front of a microphone and with so many people around. Suddenly, some boys became a bit shy as the entire spotlight was on them. However, all of them did try their best. Even though they were really enjoying themselves, they never failed to look out for one another and encouraged each other in their own naughty yet heartwarming manner. The boys somehow even persuaded each of us to co- present a live broadcast show with them. However, the part that genuinely touched me was when they cheered for me after I did a talk- set.
After the event ended, we headed back to Boys’ Town and when we had to say our goodbyes, the boys’ offered to share their dinner with us so that we could spend a few more hours with them. This action really moved us and we believe that we have fostered a special bond with the boys. Though it was a one-day event, the boys left their footprints in our hearts. They taught an important lesson that many of us fail to take seriously: never judge a book by its cover. We learnt that to gain a person’s trust and really get to know him, we must first dismiss all prejudices and misconceptions that we may have on him and really, just accept the person for who he is.
In our fast-paced life, simple gestures always go unappreciated. Little did we know, that such a small effort on our part, created a huge impact for the boys’. The distance between humans is simply just one hand. Offer our own hands, reach out for others, lift up the fallen, then we will all see the change we want to see in the world J
Luong Thi Khanh Linh,
Lee Kong Chian School of Business,
Singapore Management University,
1st Year Undergraduate,
“Our team and Boys’ Town would like to express our heartfelt appreciation for nEbO’s generous support of Project Ki-Wee.”
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