Inaugural Friendship Express SIF Connects! KL and Bangkok

Jul 13, 2018

Dear Friends,

Friendship Express

The inaugural run of the Singapore International Foundation’s Friendship Express for bridging communities was held from 11 to 23 June 2012. 50 Asian youths representing eight nationalities from Singapore’s five polytechnics, the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia and the King Mongkut’s University of Technology North Bangkok, embarked on a two-week expedition spanning Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand, where they gained insights and a better appreciation of different cultures, strengthened camaraderie and made friends with local communities.

The SIF partnered organisations in all three countries to run the Friendship Express, aimed at building people-to-people relationships, nurturing social responsibility among Asian youth leaders, and enabling collaborations between communities for a better world.

From packing food hampers for needy families at Food from the Heart in Singapore and learning about Malaysian culture through community projects and a home-stay experience, to working with local Thais to develop innovative solutions to community issues such as water quality as well as business and livelihood, the Friendship Express has impacted the lives of both programme participants and the different communities they encountered.

We are pleased to share with you some programme highlights through these photographs.

  • Gaining insights into Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand from the ambassadors in Singapore
  • Packing food hampers for needy families at Food from the Heart in Singapore
  • Cultural appreciation through songs on the train ride from Singapore to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Cultural immersion and experiential learning in Pahang, Malaysia
  • Sharing business and livelihood ideas with villagers in Klang, Malaysia
  • Discussing project ideas with the Malaysian Youth Council’s President, Mr Mohamed Maliki Mohamed Rapiee (in red)
  • Learning about unique farming techniques at the Mechai Bamboo School in Buriram, Thailand
  • Learning about community needs and issues from Thai villagers
  • Demonstrating to Thai villagers the possibilities of art and craft as a means of business and livelihood

Do visit our official blog for more on the Friendship Express journey.

SIF Connects! Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok

The SIF organised SIF Connects! Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok on 15 June and 22 June respectively, in conjunction with the Friendship Express. These two events celebrated the new friendships forged between communities and SIFs reconnection with Friends of Singapore (FOS) communities in both cities. SIF Connects! Bangkok took on an added significance with the appointment of Ms Kanlaya Kampan, as the SIF programme alumni representative to help reconnect and grow the FOS community in Thailand.

We share highlights of the two events through these photographs.

Singapore’s High Commissioner to Malaysia Mr Ong Keng Yong sharing a light moment with Friendship Express participants at SIF Connects! Kuala Lumpur at Rumah Temasek

SIF Executive Director Ms Jean Tan (in green) appoints Ms Kanlaya Kampan as the foundation’s programme alumni representative in Bangkok, Thailand
Singapore’s Ambassador to Thailand Mrs Chua Siew San (centre, in light grey) with Friends of Singapore (FOS) in Thailand

We look forward to your continued support of SIF programmes for bridging Singaporeans and world communities.

Your friend,
SIngapore International Foundation

The Singapore International Foundation makes friends for a better world. We build enduring relationships between Singaporeans and world communities, harnessing these friendships to enrich lives and effect positive change. Find out more at
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