I would like to wish MDAS a Happy 15th Anniversary. To me, it feels like MDAS has now grown to become a teenager. I was there when MDAS was born. There were a group of concerned parents who wanted to do more for themselves and their children. The group was supported by the late Dr Yee Woon Chee who was instrumental in providing guidance and direction for the founding parents. I was invited to help set up MDAS as a society, to take care of the legal aspects. I stayed on to be its first President and served for 2 terms. In the early days, we had no place to meet and had to meet at the Tan Tock Seng Hospital Food Court. Now we have a centre and a team of dedicated full time staff to serve MDAS. I would like to thank the late Dr Yee for his vision, Sherena Loh for her dedication and the numerous parents that give selflessly to make MDAS what it is today. The future is in all our hands, what MDAS grows into depends on the dedication and commitment of each and every member, supporter and volunteer. My wish is for MDAS to grow into a young adult, strong, vibrant and full of life.
It has been 12 years since I started as a volunteer and I am glad I did because over the years, not only have I seen the association grow, I have also benefitted from the series of activities such as the various fundraising events and camps. I have to say that this journey was amazing because I am truly inspired by every member. Their life stories, their courage and how they take things positively really set me reflecting on my approach towards life. Thank you MDAS! May the association continue to grow and provide more support for its members with MD!
A chance meeting with a staff at MDAS got us connected again and it was timely as King Wan was exploring the possibility of a long term partner to kick start our Corporate Social Responsibility Program. A closer encounter at MDAS one afternoon, helped sealed this partnership. The team’s commitment in uplifting the lives of their members touched me tremendously. Seeing how the staff work tirelessly in helping these special group of people lead independent lives like you and me, makes me want to do more for them.
A group of volunteers from King Wan help in their weekly Power Soccer sessions since Sept 2014. I see their dedication in wanting to make the sessions fruitful for the members by devising ways of improving power soccer equipment. They have made friends with each other and I personally feel that the volunteers from different departments have since bonded with each other.
I sincerely hope that MDAS will continue to touch lives and reach far and wide to all who need their services.
Danial is the younger of our sons with MD. We joined MDAS in 2013 and enrolled Danial into the weekly Bridge programme to help him cope with his studies. We believe that with MDAS, Danial will continue to do his best. What he plants now, he will harvest later. It does not matter how long he will take to accomplish these as long as he does not stop dreaming and works towards achieving his goals.
I would like to say thank you to Sherena, Judy and the staff at MDAS for being so encouraging to Danial. I can see that he is now a happy child. He always looks forward to participating in MDAS' programme and activities. He is really enjoying himself and trying new experiences.
Happy Anniversary MDAS. This is a good time to remember the past that is marked with good times and best wishes for the future ahead.
I first got to know about MDAS from my DMD patients. They were strong advocates for MDAS as MDAS activities allowed them to build strong friendships. I was also introduced to MDAS by the late Dr Yee Woon Chee, whom I had got to know in 2004 when we were working together on clinical and research issues in muscle diseases. I like how there is a synergy between MDAS and our NUHkids medical team as we can share perspectives on how to help our muscle dystrophy patients better. Over the past 8 - 10 years there have been so many changes in the treatment of patients with DMD both on the medical and physical as well as the social and emotional front. It really helps that using our individual expertise, we can help to look after different aspects of life in a more well-rounded way. We are always asking what we can do better for our kids with muscle problems and this partnership has helped us keep answering that question in practical and innovative ways. A single issue like respiratory muscle weakness, for example, is tackled on all sides - in NUH we have cough assist devices, Acapella and incentive spirometer training and breath stacking training; in MDAS there is also cough assist devices, respiratory therapy and choir singing to increase respiratory capacity. Our patients get the full benefit of each problem being tackled on the medical as well as the community fronts.
I wish that MDAS will grow from strength to strength and continue to be a voice in the community for children and teenagers with muscle disorders. I have patients from other countries who come also to meet with MDAS and I hope that MDAS can not only serve the local community but also be a strong influence on countries around Singapore.