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Inner Wheel Club of Singapore’s 75th Anniversary celebration was a grand event with Inner Wheel dignitaries of every flavour. We had the Presidents of clubs in our district 331, the District Chairman Datin Gillian and National Representative Ambika as well as many past Board Directors of IIW and one IIW Past President as well as many past and present district office holders. Good wishes and messages were sent from New Zealand, Matamata Club, UK ForFar Club and all past District Chairmen and Past National Reps. As President Sita mentioned in her opening address, 75 years is no mean feat and she thanked all present for their commitment to friendship and service. Due to the COVID-19 restrictions, the gathering was an online event with the master of ceremonies, District Secretary and Past President Maria moving the programme along smoothly.
55 members and guests attended the celebration on 17 November 2021 from 3 to 4.40 pm.
The Inner Wheel Club of Singapore was chartered in 1946 with Mrs KM Engelmann as its first President. In keeping with the occasion, President Sita had put together a presentation of Past Presidents and old photos illustrating the courageous and generous women who had helmed the Club. Following the presentation, 6 senior members and Past Presidents shared the milestones of their membership and leadership on a pre-recorded video.
Other highlights of the event were the induction of a new member into the Club. An inspiring and encouraging message from District Chairman Datin Gillian, the presentation of the Club’s major project and the cutting of the cake by a Senior member.
The major project is the kitchen renovation at the Star Shelter (a shelter for abused women and their children). Lydia Soh of Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO) that runs the Shelter, presented the progress of the renovation. The club has committed to providing all the necessary equipment for the kitchen. Lydia expressed her gratitude to the Club for the contribution.
It was an exciting moment when PP Ellen Louis aged 98 zoomed in from her home. She cut a blue, yellow and white cake, blew out the candles and congratulated everyone. Everyone sang happy birthday for the Club and were delighted to see PP Ellen looking so well.
The celebration concluded with congratulatory messages and a heartfelt rendition of Que Sera Sera sung by members taking a line each.
A surprise element was presented by DC Gillian who had been delving into the archives of the Singapore newspaper, The Straits Times. She found a photo from the 70s at the time when IWCS was able to get two new clubs chartered in Singapore. She ‘framed’ the photo and presented it as a gift to the Club in gratitude for the many years of Inner Wheel friendship, service and generating new growth.
As members and guests departed the digital space, there was hope that this event can be celebrated in person in March 2022.