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NDP 2018 funpack to showcase 18 designs by special needs students

SINGAPORE — Featuring imagery such as the Republic's skyline, flag and ordinary citizens, for the first time, the iconic funpack for this year's National Day Parade (NDP) will showcase 18 artworks by special needs students.

NDP 2018 funpack to showcase 18 designs by special needs students

A student packs a funpack. This year, the funpack will showcase 18 artworks by special needs students.

SINGAPORE — Featuring imagery such as the Republic's skyline, flag and ordinary citizens, for the first time, the iconic funpack for this year's National Day Parade (NDP) will showcase 18 artworks by special needs students.

On Tuesday (June 26), at an event to showcase this year's funpacks at the floating platform at Marina Bay, President Halimah Yacob met and thanked the student artists from Special Education (Sped) schools. A total of 38 students were behind the 18 selected designs.

The NDP organising committee said in line with this year's theme "We are Singapore", including the Sped artists "aims to inspire Singaporeans to be proud of our identity and achievements, and to have confidence in creating Singapore's future together".

Speaking to reporters at the sidelines of the event, Madam Halimah said: "Look at the designs, as I said will never be able to do any of them … This shows that each and every one of us has a part to play and contribute, and we must make every effort to showcase such efforts."

Adding that she hopes the step that the NDP committee took to involve the Sped community will not be a one-off effort, she said: "It will be a strong message sent through our society to everyone to do their part to support out special needs community because they do have talent … They have special talent and capabilities that many of us don't have."

The funpack, which come in the form of tote bags this year, has a shoulder sling, as well as an additional long sling to accommodate different carrying preferences.

It contains items such as a light bubble and placard that the audience can use to participate in the parade, an assortment of snacks, as well as a full-colour souvenir magazine containing fun facts about NDP 2018.

There will also be an art booklet showcasing all 18 funpack artworks, the artists and their inspirations behind the designs.

A sneak peek at the items inside this year's funpack. Photo: Chng Shao Kai/TODAY

Senior Lieutenant Colonel Quek Yew Sing, chairman of the Logistics and Finance Committee for NDP 2018, said the initiative to get Sped students involved was made in collaboration with Ministry of Education (MOE) and Ministry of Social and Family Development.

The call for artwork was open to all MOE-registered Sped schools. Emails were sent out in September last year, with the last design submission received in January this year.

Mrs Norlidah Shahrin, 50, head of department for Physical Education and Art / Co-curricular Activities for APSN Chaoyang School, told TODAY that the entire school was involved in the project. All students were invited to draw, and the school selected two artworks for submission. In the end, the NDP committee selected one of the two designs submitted.

"It is a good opportunity and platform for the children to highlight their talent, they are good at arts and sports. If nobody tell you that it's drawn by special needs children, you wouldn't be able to realise," said Mrs Shahrin.

The 18 selected designs were a combination of individual as well as group effort. One design by Grace Orchard School involved 21 students.

This year, there are 252,000 funpacks available for distribution.

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