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Official Magazine of the Nature Society (Singapore)

Celebrating Irresistible
and Irreplaceable Nature

by Trixie Tan

Nature Day arrived this year with the enduring message of protecting our inheritance for future generations. For many of us, and hopefully more to come, Nature has become an irreplaceable part of our lives. It takes centrestage in unison with our families, our work and our understanding of the world we have come to inhabit. From May 5 to 7, 2001, the Nature Society (Singapore) demonstrated, through exhibitions, shows and educational walks, how to "Celebrate Nature, Celebrate our Heritage".

With its brigade of enthusiastic volunteers, Nature Day was both three days of fun and entertainment, as well as bringing home the message of caring for our natural environment. For the second time running, PARCO Bugis Junction generously sponsored its shopping mall location for this event. At the official opening, NSS President, Dr Geh Min, and PARCO Bugis Junction General Manager Mr Tong Kok Wing, symbolically "re-leafed" a bare tree—a gesture which showed the importance of nature as part of our heritage.

Each leaf represented a resolution to ensure that our environment continues to be protected. The activities were organised by the Society's special interest groups and volunteers as well as other environmental organisations such as Sungei Buloh Nature Park, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and Singapore Environmental Council. Raleigh International (Singapore) Operation Tashi Deleg was also present to raise funds for its youth participants.

A host of activities were also put on for kids and by kids. These included animal face painting, henna tattooing, button badge-making and painting your own T-shirts. Merchandise on sale were a variety of t-shirts, bird ceramics, nature photographs, canvas bags, nature publications, potted plants, organic vegetables, gifts and stationery. Not forgetting performances by student finalists of BirdLife International's "Save the Birds, Save the Trees, Save the Earth" regional competition organised in Singapore by the Society's Education Group. The Environmentalists, a group from CHIJ Katong Primary School who performed their poem at the launch, had been selected to represent Asia at the worldwide competition which will be held in Taiwan.

No Nature Day is ever complete without its stars. This year, our committed volunteers also gave their all to give show-and-tell sessions on pitcher plants, stick and leaf insects, ferns, figs, pondlife and of course, nature walks and story-telling. Exhibitions were also mounted to tell stories about "Apes - Man's nearest relatives endangered", "Our Marine Heritage", Pulau Ubin, "Save the Birds" and "Wildlife in Danger".

Three days were just not enough to tell Nature's story - so look out for next year's Nature Day for the unending and enduring tale of our planet.

The volunteers had as much fun
as the kids when it came to
getting their faces painted
to publicise their booth.

Green-fingered NSS members
donated potted flowering plants,
herbs and a variety of houseplants
for sale at the plant booth to raise funds for the NSS Plant group. Looking at the selection, from left.
Mrs Angie Ng, Dr Geh Min,
Dr Vilma D'Rozario, and
Mr Tong Kok Wing, General Manager of PARCO Bugis Junction.

Dr Tan Wee Kiat,
carnivorous plant enthusiast, conducting a show-and-tell session with cuttings of his favourite plants.

CHIJ Katong Primary 3 students
on stage with their act to
"Save the Birds, Save the Trees,
Save the Earth".

The awareness exhibitions on endangered wildlife and their
habitats sent a message out
to both young and old.

The indoor, air-conditioned
shopping mall of PARCO
Bugis Junction was the perfect
setting for the event, reaching
out to thousands of shoppers
daily during the 3-day festivities.
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