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Honour Singapore
Seeking the Well-Being of the Nation
Chairman’s Letter: April 2020
Dear Friends and Partners of Honour (Singapore)

I hope this note finds you and your family well and in good health. Take care. Be safe. Keep well.

In this time of “social distancing”, it seems to me that we need to mount even more deliberate effort to express mental and emotional social togetherness even as we exercise physical social distancing. Honour (Singapore) is thinking through what we can and should do in this matter of thinking about others and helping each other in whatever way we can. It is an important part of our mission to promote a culture of honour and honouring for the well-being of our nation. If you have ideas in this regard, or would like to join together with us to promote social togetherness, please drop a note to me at LimSiongGuan@honour.sg.

I write to provide a few quick updates on Honour (Singapore), but more importantly, if you could spare me a couple of minutes, to share some thoughts which I hope you would find helpful and encouraging especially during these challenging and uncertain times.
Key Updates
In view of serious concerns over the spread of COVID-19 within communities and across national boundaries, we are having to postpone the Honour International Symposium 2020 (HIS2020) that had been planned for 23-24 July 2020. We will decide and announce the new dates when the situation is clearer. This postponement would be for several months and could stretch well into 2021. I am sorry for the inconvenience to you in the change of dates. But it is the right thing to do.

We are working on a new film initiative - Honouring our Frontline Heroes - which is a very small way to say thank you to our frontline heroes, who are making many sacrifices and working tirelessly day and night, keeping us and our loved ones safe and sound. Saying thank you to the frontline heroes is, of course, nothing new. We see many initiatives and expressions of appreciation and gratitude being featured on TV and mainstream media and social media. What we want to do is to feature some of the heroes which, it seems to us, have not quite received the degree of attention they deserve.

There are already a good number of Honour Films which show ordinary people recognising the work and contributions of people we don’t normally think about. You can find the films on our website at www.honour.sg or on social media at www.facebook.com/HonourOurSingapore/ or www.instagram.com/honoursingapore/. Do use these films to spread the message of gratitude and the virtue of looking out for others.

This is a challenging time for everyone and we in Honour (Singapore) feel with you in this time of fear and anxiety. But while I know this is not the best of times to appeal for donations to keep Honour (Singapore) going, may I appeal, if you are in a situation to be able to help, that you join us in our One Thousand Friends of Honour (Singapore) programme, where we request for a donation of $1,000 per year from individual donors, or $5,000 per year from business and corporate donors, with the facility, of course, for you to stop at any time. Please forgive us if we should offend you with this appeal, but I am directing this appeal only to those of you who can consider helping us out despite the times. All donations qualify for tax deductibility as Honour (Singapore) has IPC (Institution of Public Character) status. Should you have any queries over this programme, you may write to us at admin@honour.sg.
Be the Best You Can Be
We are in unchartered waters as the entire world grapples with the coronavirus situation which is rapidly evolving as the days go by. How do we think and act when we cannot say how things will be like a day, a week or a month from now? How do we deal with an unanticipated and unwelcome situation? How do we live with a “black swan” event, both on an individual and collective level. [Note: A black swan event is an event which is totally unanticipated, the picture being one of not being able to conceive of a black swan when all we have ever seen are white swans, so that we had begun to develop a self-belief that all swans are white – until, of course, the day we see a black swan, and all our assumptions about truth and knowledge and the ability to anticipate events are suddenly destroyed.]

The answer to tackling a “black swan” event cannot lie in predicting and reacting to the event, as it is by definition unpredictable. The answer lies in having life attitudes of openness, adaptability, a willingness to learn and think again and try something new. Fundamentally, this requires self-confidence and a desire always to be the best we can be – not in a competitive kind of way, but in the belief that if we are ever less than what we can be, we would have achieved less than we could have with our talents and abilities.

We need to honour ourselves by taking self-responsibility and doing the best that we can so that we can add to the well-being of the lives of those around us while discovering how much we can do with our talents and abilities. We can start by reminding ourselves to always honour our word and honour each other. This is how to build up the trust and confidence of those who cross our paths, and by doing so, we enhance the total capacity, capability, and well-being of our families, our communities, our organisations, our society, and our nation.

As Singapore is a “little red dot” on a huge global map, we must never forget that no one owes us a living and that no one else is responsible for our peace, stability and security. The drive to be exceptional in the way we think is not an option; it is destiny for Singapore. And it is destiny for each of us to be individual red dots who:
  • Honour our word to establish a reputation for being trustworthy and reliable
  • Honour each other by always thinking about the well-being and success of ourselves and others
  • Honour ourselves by:
    • Taking responsibility for our lives and our dreams
    • Desiring to be the best that we can be in everything we do
    • Having the courage to try new things
    • Having the discernment to cut losses when things do not work out
    • Having a relentless drive for excellence
And finally, Honour is within us – it is a muscle that grows stronger if we choose to exercise it, but loses its functionality if we choose not to work it. There is much to look forward to in the future unfolding before us and the future we can create, but it is a future to be shaped and to be gained by honouring the goodness and kindness of the human spirit. Our survival, well-being, and success rests on being a people of honour, and cultivating children who learn, grow, and live with honour.

It has often been said that crises brings out the best (and worst) in us. The choice is for us to make, individually and collectively, to confront the challenge of COVID-19 and emerge an even stronger, more forward-looking and naturally gracious Singapore.

Thank you for standing with us, as we stand with you and the nation. I wish you and family and your business the steadfastness for these times. “Never waste a crisis,” so it is said. May you see the opportunities also in these times.


Lim Siong Guan
Founding Chairman, Honour (Singapore)

www.honour.sg | info@honour.sg
© 2020 Honour (Singapore) Limited
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