CampTeen 2014: Youth Racial Harmony Ambassadors Programme
Have you ever been misunderstood? Have you ever been judged by the school you belong to? Your results? Or……your race? This year’s CampTeen, with the theme of “Superheroes!”, incorporated two exciting segments to enable campers to understand the negative impacts of stereotyping. The Forum Theatre segment explored three different case studies where tension points between people of different nationalities, races and religion exist. The Forum Theatre presented scenarios and opened the stage to campers to share how they would have reacted or behaved differently to alleviate tensions between different parties. Campers found the Forum Theatre exciting and participated actively.
The second activity incorporated into the camp for the first time this year was an open discussion which took place after the campers watched a social experiment on a video,“Blue Eyes, Brown Eyes”. The video gave the campers a peep into racism in America and the strong negative impacts of stereotyping.. The discussion was facilitated by OPSG’s in-house facilitators who were trained under the Community Engagement Leadership Programme (CELP) in collaboration with the Ministry of Education (MOE).
Reflections from campers – On Discrimination and Stereotyping
I have learnt that we should not discriminate people because of their race and their skin tone.
~ Nur Farhanah Bte Mohd Jalil, 14, Admiralty Secondary School
The camp allowed us to know what is discrimination and (our friends) sharing their perspective when being discriminated. This was from the ‘Blue Eyes Brown Eyes’ Activity.
~ Ang Ying Xuan, 14, Singaporean, Admiralty Secondary School
Over 220 multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-national students from over 30 different schools and community organisations participated in CampTeen 2014. The camp was held at OnePeople.sg and PA Water Venture (Sembawang) from 10 – 13 November 2014.
The camp also brought the campers through a journey of cultural and heritage explorations through visiting different places of culture and worship such as the Malay Heritage Centre, Sun Yat Sen Nanyang Memorial Hall, , Thian Hock Keng Temple, Sultan Mosque, Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery, Wesley Methodist Church and more. By visiting the various heritage sites and places of worship, campers had an opportunity to learn more about Singapore’s diverse social landscape.
The theme of the camp, Superheroes, suggested that there is a superhero in each individual. If they will step up and make friend from a different race, religion or nationality, they can make a difference by strengthening our social fabric.
Reflections from campers – On Racial Harmony, Cultures and Friendships
I now know how special and fragile racial harmony is in Singapore.
~ Varen Tan, 14, Singaporean, Pasir Ris Secondary School
I have learnt to appreciate other culture’s traditions and food. While I was making friends with people of different races, I found out many things that I did not know before. Now it does not matter to me if someone has a different race or religion. I will treat them with respect and friendliness.
~ Afra Farveen D/O MD Haneefa, 14, Singaporean, Tanjong Katong Girls’ School
Yes, this programme has taught me so much about other cultures and even new things about my own culture.
~ Nurul Fatimah Bte Iskandar Mude Abdul Jalil, 15, Singaporean, Madrasah Al-Ma’arif Al-Islamiah
During this camp, we had international students who shared about their experience in their home countries. Their culture s and practices are different from what we have in Singapore now. Their sharing has opened my eyes into a new world.
~ Arfa Farveen D/O MD Haneefa, 14, Singaporean, Tanjong Katong Girls School