Acting Minister for Education, Mr Ong Ye Kung celebrates youth achievements and motivates other youths to follow in their footsteps and create their own defining moments at nEbO’s Spirit of Youth Awards.

A total of 10 individual and team awards were presented by Guest of Honour Mr Ong Ye Kung, Acting Minister for Education (Higher Education and Skills) and Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Defence, to 54 youth leaders whose achievements were recognised at nEbO’s annual Spirit of Youth Awards (SOYA) today at Downtown East, D’Marquee.
SOYA was attended by over 400 guests and is the culmination of a rigorous four-month process of judging and evaluation from the 160 selected youth award nominees. Now in its sixth year, SOYA not only recognise contributions by nEbO youths, but also serve to inspire and motivate youths to boldly create possibilities and make a positive difference in the youth community in Singapore. Please refer to Annex A for a full list of award categories and winners.
“As a community for the youth, by the youth, our members play an important role in our success. Since our launch in 2007, nEbO have groomed a total of 1,000 youth leaders, ensuring continual leadership renewal within the community. These leaders have moved from being just participants to activist, and some of whom are alumni, act as mentors to the younger leaders. We are committed to invest and develop our youths potential and successfully groom future leaders who will contribute back to society,” Mr Lim Eng Lee, NTUC Alignment Director (nEbO).
As part of its mission to nurture and groom future leaders in Singapore, nEbO has identified leadership development and Work-Ready initiatives as its two key areas of focus. Aptly called nEbO LEAD (Lead, Engage and Develop), nEbO’s leadership framework allows nEbO to identify potential leaders from tertiary institutions who can contribute at the community level for the Labour Movement.
Besides targeting tertiary institutions, nEbO has also approached several secondary schools to forge a partnership by offering various engagement platforms for youths to develop personal, social and leadership skills to help them deal with the challenges of adolescence. In collaboration with Adam Khoo Learning Technologies Group, nEbO launched its first ever leadership programme for secondary school students – LEAD Junior, last December. Please refer to Annex B for full details on nEbO’s leadership framework.
In 2015, more than 90 community events and activities had been organised by nEbO members and about half of these were events conceptualised and carried out by the nEbO youths themselves. These youth-initiated projects enable nEbO youths to better prepare themselves on the independency and responsibility of being workers of tomorrow through the development of competencies and skills.
One example of a youth-initiated project that clinched the ‘Team of Versatility Award’ this year is the Youth Entrepreneurship Symposium (YES) 2015. This ‘Team of Versatility Award’ recognises a team that best performs the five qualities nEbO develops in their youths – Creativity, Leadership, Adaptability, Competence and Resourcefulness. Made up of members from the five polytechnics in Singapore – Singapore Polytechnic, Temasek Polytechnic, Nanyang Polytechnic, Ngee Ann Polytechnic and Republic Polytechnic, the winning team of 15 youths organised an initiative to promote and encourage youth entrepreneurship – Youth Entrepreneurship Symposium (YES) 2015. YES 2015 had over 460 young budding entrepreneurs from various Junior Colleges, Polytechnics and Institutes of Technical Education (ITE) across Singapore whom participated in a three-day symposium where youths had the opportunity to network and interact with successful entrepreneurs, as well as prepare them with skills that can come into use when setting up their own business.
Besides pushing youths to excel academically, nEbO understands the importance of building character, the right attitude and to expose youths to real-work experience, for them to get Work-Ready, World-Ready and Life-Ready for their future.
A team member from the YES 2015 youth committee as well as a winner of the EXCEL Award this year is Mr Toh Lip An. The EXCEL award is given to outstanding leaders who inspire their peers and other nEbOians. Upon joining nEbO in 2014, 20-year-old Lip An from Singapore Polytechnic turned his passion into action and took up more entrepreneurship projects and also roped in his peers to be involved in the Entrepreneurship Community.
“In 2015, I was given an opportunity to participate in one of nEbO’s outdoor leadership programme – LEAD, where we were given first-hand experience from building personal skills to being effective team players. The LEAD programme has certainly benefitted me by equipping me with the knowledge and skills needed to be a leader and to initiate and organise large-scale events,“ said Mr Toh Lip An, youth leader in nEbO’s Entrepreneurship Community.
Moving forward, nEbO will continue to work closely with our members to tailor programmes for them as well as with existing and new training partners and organisation to enhance the leadership programme.

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