More than 500 learn about local biodiversity at World Water Day @ Lorong Halus Wetland (24 Mar 2012)

 

Raffles Museum Toddycats! first major exhibition of the year was off to a great start during the Singapore World Water Day at Lorong Halus Wetland on 24 March 2012. Experienced and new Toddycats turned up and put on a great front for the public who came by our specimen-laden booths. Within 3 hours, we shared with more than 500 people about our local biodiversity, threats and how we should conserve them.

Without hesitatation, new Toddycat volunteer Audrey Heyzer started guiding once the specimens were out of their boxes.

As the crowd started streaming in at 8am, our volunteers approached residents of all ages with smiles and fascinating specimens that showcased Singapore’s  biodiversity. From wet and dry specimens to skulls, posters and board games, the masses were enthralled and deeply awed. Children left with greater knowledge on wildlife, while adults were equally intrigued and inspired to conserve our local biodiversity.

Toddycat Pang Wei Han providing some help to a parent and his kids on how to match the diet and habitat of some of our local fauna.

Look at the number of interested people! All the volunteers were busy engaging the crowd! (Photo by Foo Fang Chee)

During the event, Guest-of-Honour, Mr Teo Chee Hean interacted with Toddycat Junius Soh who talked to DPM Teo about horseshoe crabs and the arrival of the new natural history museum in 2014.

Experienced Toddycat volunteer Junius Soh sharing a quick conversation and laugh with DPM Teo Chee Hean (Photo by Foo Fang Chee)

After an opening speech by DPM Teo and opening of a new Learning Trail, participating organisations were presented with a certificate of appreciation! Fung Tze Kwan, one of the Toddycats exhibition managers, represented Raffles Museum Toddycats! to receive the plaque amidst loud cheers from the volunteers.

DPM Teo giving a wave to the Toddycats volunteers. He commented to Tze Kwan that our loud cheers sounded like a fan club's when she collected the appreciation award!

Even as the sultry high noon approached, people still dropped by our booth and showed their support, which greatly encouraged our volunteers to keep going.

Overall, the event was a great success. By the end of the day, we reached out to more than 500 individuals (adults and children). The great turnout allowed us not only to raise awareness amongst the public about our museum, but also to educate them about Singapore’s rich biodiversity and the imperative need to conserve the various extant species. It was undoubtedly a very enriching and unforgettable experience for both the public and our volunteers. Raffles Museum Toddycats! will be having more activities coming up in the next few months, watch out for any updates here!

Candid group photo - a big smile on everyone's faces!

Overall, the event would not have been a success without the help of all our volunteers – Pang Wei Han, Jocelyne Sze Shimin, Audrey Heyzer, Lim Sixian, Lua Yi Wen Clarissa, Ami Yousoff Bin Mohamed Ali, Kwek Cher Wei Dennis
Quek Zheng Bin Randolph, Junius Soh, Gladys Chua, Goh Li Ching (DENSO), Suriya Binte Surani (DENSO), Eun Jung Min, Jeremy Ng Wee Kiat, Kwan Wei Ming Ivan, Chong Jun Hien, Boh Zuze, Ng Qi Qi, Toh Xue Qin, Sarah Seo, Genevieve Yeo and Joelle Lai. Special thanks to Foo Fang Chee and Gladys Chua for taking photos of the volunteers in action, Junius Soh and Audrey Heyzer for helping to transport specimens to and fro NUS, and Kelvin Lim and Sarah Ng of RMBR for helping us with specimen extraction and merchandise respectively. Lastly, we would also like to extend our gratitude to those who cycled down and showed us support- Andy Dinesh, Kenneth Pinto, Kevin Lim, Airani and Toddycats coordinator, Siva!

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