Reflections About Learn-A-Thon 2011 (Part 3)

by Patrick Liew on December 7, 2011

When I initiated Learn-A-Thon 2011, little did I know that it would start a wave. A wave that knew no lines, walls or boundaries.

Please allow me to share just one of them – a phenomenon that we talked about quite often in Singapore. A phenomenon that has merits and yet, has brought about many conflicts and controversies.

I’m referring to foreign talents – both those visiting our shores and those living here.

When Learn-A-Thon 2011 was first conceptualised, I thought it would be a Singaporean project. The nationalistic inclination in me wanted it to be a Singaporean project by Singaporeans.

How wrong I was.

It went beyond creed, colour, culture, custom and country. Among the speakers who responded – five of them were foreign talents and flying in from overseas for this occasion.

One of our emcees, Deborah Patel hails from USA and is a leading voice and preparation coach. She started singaing, dancing and acting professionally at age 4 and has shared the stage with celebrities such as Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson.

Our volunteers-driven committee slowly took on an international look. We had permanent residents from different countries. For lack of space, let me just state three of them.

Danny Chaplin was helping us on the public relations front. He has had an illustrious career, having been a journalist before and had worked for some of the blue-chip PR firms such as Edelman, Fleishman-Hillard, Hickson PR and Riddle-Finn Asia. He has supervised PR campaigns in almost every market in the Asia Pacific Region.

Kevin Cottam was helping us to create an exciting and memorable experience. He has produced and directed award-winning dance films and been involved with large scale productions like the 1988 Calgary Olympic Games Closing Ceremonies.

Ross, who was in charge of sound and A/V at the Lion King Musical and other big travelling theatre shows to Singapore, has also volunteered to oversee the sound and lighting effects together with a team of specialists.

We saw globalisation at work in this out-from-our-heart project.

We saw love being globallised.

I realized that in the new economy, we need to break down all man-made walls to generate outstanding results. We need to rope in talents from everywhere to create beautiful memories.

A ray of hope is shining within me. Like the Berlin Wall, what if the negative man-made walls between cultures, communities and countries were to come down?


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Please go to ‘Notes’ found below my profile picture.

Visit my Inspiration blog at

Visit my Transformation blog at

Please read them and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!


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