The Centre for Fathering partnered with the Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music to host a Charity Concert of light classics to benefit the Centre’s programmes and causes.
$165,000 was raised in the recent Gift of Wings Charity Concert held at the magnificent Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music. It was a night to truly inspire as the Tang Quartet, the Conservatory Orchestra, and talented Yong Siew Toh piano students performed a rousing series of light classics to a very special audience.
The Concert’s aim was to raise funds for the Centre for Fathering’s various programmes, expanding father groups in schools, supporting marginalized families, and creating strategic partnerships to drive active fathering campaigns nation-wide. A new programme also benefits from the funds raised – the Beginning Parenting Programme for parents welcoming newborns.
Now in its fourth year, the Concert’s Guest of Honour was Assoc. Professor Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, Parliamentary Secretary for the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Social and Family Development.
Apart from raising funds for the important causes for dads and families, the concert was a rare opportunity for many beneficiaries of the Centre for Fathering’s programmes to come together and experience as families, the beauty of the performing arts as the musicians played bird-inspired compositions individually, as a quartet and up to a full orchestra.
During the Intermission, the Chairman for Centre for Fathering, Mr Richard Hoon, addressed the audience, and he emphasized that with stressors on the rise in contemporary living, supporting fathers was a mission that had become more urgent and needful.
Mr Hoon also shared the inspiring tale of ‘Kino’ (Mohd Noor Ismail), a former drug offender who turned his life around, and today runs a successful business. Crucially, Kino now lives out his life as a dedicated father and even a role model to other dads by his commitment to tell his story at the Centre’s training programmes and workshops.
It was the audience’s turn to step up as Mr Hoon appealed for “Angels” to help raise $50,000 to the cause of helping fathers incarcerated in prisons and halfway houses. Many generous donors came forward, each giving $2000 to help the beneficiaries reintegrate with society and begin the work of repairing their relationships with their families and communities.
Bringing the evening to a close was a worthy performance of Stravinsky’s ballet, ‘The Firebird’, a more than 20-minute concert version by the Conservatory Orchestra. The performance featured shimmering harmonics, booming crescendos, and an ending the conductor, Jason Lai, aptly described as a “blaze of glory”.
A glorious night of musical performances was thus concluded. For the Centre for Fathering and its work including championing Dads for Life, the Concert represented an important boost to carrying out a great effort to continue turning the hearts of children to their fathers.