​Singapore General Hospital is organising the President’s Challenge activities for SingHealth institutions this year.

Eight pairs of siblings, spouses, parents and children will take to the roads before climbing to the top of SingHealth Tower come August in a bid to raise funds for this year’s President’s Challenge.

They are among 200 pairs of runners who together will run a total of 200km in the SingHealth Digital Relay to set a new Singapore Book of Records’ Longest Relay Run. Significantly, the 200 number underscores the 200th anniversary being celebrated this year by Singapore General Hospital (SGH), which is organising the President’s Challenge activities for SingHealth institutions. The figure also represents the 200 years of medicine that Singapore is celebrating in 2021.

Outram Community Nurse Mr Shaifullah Abu Bakar (left), in a staged photo, represents the last runner who will end the race at Level 12 of SingHealth Tower, while his brother, SGH General Surgery nurse Mr Khairullah Abu Bakar, runs behind him to complete the run together. 

Senior Radiographer Joyce Siew (left) from KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital and Assistant Nurse Clinician Linda Siew (below) from Singapore National Eye Centre are sisters participating in the SingHealth Digital Relay to raise funds for SingHealth President’s Challenge 2021.

“The SingHealth family has come together as one to support President’s Challenge since 2004,” said Dr Gan Wee Hoe, Chairman of SingHealth President’s Challenge 2021. “Even as we continue to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, this public health crisis has thrown into sharp relief the challenges faced by vulnerable groups in society. This compels us in SingHealth to once again rally to raise funds for the needy and the less fortunate in our midst,” added Dr Gan.

Dr Gan said that the format of this year’s events is different from previous years because of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Our physical presence will be scaled down significantly to comply with safe management measures, but we hope that hosting these events in the virtual space will bring together even more supporters and donors than before,” said Dr Gan, who is also Head, Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, and Chief Medical Informatics Officer, SGH.

Besides ensuring that the race does not violate safe management measures, passing on the baton virtually is in line with this year’s national President’s Challenge focus to build a digitally inclusive society. The traditional donation Pledge Cards will include a QR code to encourage donors to give digitally. SingHealth is also organising outreach activities for beneficiaries, as well as a ticketed virtual concert and art exhibition titled “A Night to Remember”.

Singapore’s largest healthcare group is aiming to raise $550,000, with donations to benefit the SingHealth Fund (CGH Homecare Assist), South Central Community Family Service Centre, Metta Welfare Association, Rainbow Centre, and Yong-En Care Centre. These organisations offer assistance to the unwell, those with special needs as well as other vulnerable groups.