A live outdoor concert and picnic raises both funds and awareness for cancer research.
Contributed By Melissa Chen
InHerShoes, a fundraising event that pitches art and music against cancer was held on Sep. 17 at Fort Canning Park, culminating in a live concert and picnic which featured 12 local talents including Joanna Dong, Jack and Rai, with special guest appearances by Adrian Pang and his wife Tracie Howitt. InHerShoes was founded by stage and television actor, Simon Wong, who lost his wife Ng Peikie to stomach cancer at age 35. The art component of the event derives from the fact that Ng, who was an exhibition designer at the Asian Civilisations Museum, was an avid art lover. The event was named after the green shoes Ng used to wear.
With the help of her friends from the art community, the event went public last year and has now turned into a nationwide drive to help the National Cancer Centre raise awareness and funds for its cancer research program. InHerShoes also highlights the annual Run For Hope to be held this year on Nov. 20, which has a target to raise S$300,000 for cancer research.
“I took part in this event together with my friends. It was an occasion where I could enjoy quality time with them and, at the same time, support a good cause.Supporting cancer research is akin to giving hope to cancer patients,” said Caroline Aizawa, 25, a nurse.
The event started off early in the afternoon with stalls promoting a healthy lifestyle to the public, offering things from healthy recipes to natural soaps and essential oils. Wong and model and TV host Linda Black spoke about understanding cancer and its threats, emphasizing that scientific advances and dedicated cancer research activities make the search for breakthroughs a hopeful one. During the intervals, the attendees were entertained by Adrian Pang and his wife who organized games with prizes.
Jazz vocalist Joanna Dong and singer-songwriter Kathryn Wong sang several Mandarin pop songs and the evening’s theme song, “Sing Me To Sleep,” written by Wong about the conversations he once shared with his late wife. Acoustic duo Jack and Rai wowed the crowd with their wide vocal range and flexibility as they shared the stage with a host of other singers including model and jazz singer Gillian Tan, Sharon Wong, Wan Yew Fai, Wil Kolen, opera singer Wilson Goh and rap artist Shigga Shay. Caroline Tjen, a singer-songwriter, sang a song from her debut album, Because Of Love.
The evening was especially significant for Tjen, whose mother is currently battling final stage colon cancer. For her, love conquers all fears, turning the impossible into possibilities. Actress Laura Kee turned organizer for InHerShoes: “Personally, none of my loved ones have suffered from cancer, but seeing how it is affecting others and society at large, I wanted to play a part,” she explained.
Said Wong, “I find it simply amazing that this whole event was put together within just five weeks. It was a great opportunity to collaborate with the National Parks Board and the National Cancer Centre, which is the organizer for the annual Run For Hope. I am also very grateful to City Harvest Church as its members have been a pillar of support in times of need.”
Tina Chugani, 35, a marketing manager, said, “It is a good occasion for people to bring their families out for a picnic and at the same time support a good cause. I feel that it is through such events that people are more inclined to help and donate and thus give hope to the future.”
If you would like to do your part for this cause, sign up for Run For Hope at www.runforhopesingapore.org.