Unfazed by grey, hazy skies earlier in the day, hundreds of animal lovers and their canine friends came together and enlivened East Coast Park last Saturday, 3 October 2015. Drawing a record number of participants, Light Up Your Life Run was co-organised by animal welfare group Save Our Street Dogs (SOSD) and Assisi Hospice, and is their largest charity event to date.
As the PSI readings steadily escalated throughout the day, organisers weighed up the possibility of cancelling the event. Fortunately, a change in wind direction helped improve weather conditions towards the evening, allowing the charity run to carry on.
The 10 km run category was shortened to a 5 km walk. All participants and volunteers were advised to stop if they were feeling unwell or were affected by the weather conditions. Medical staff including a veterinarian were also on-site to help any participant – human or canine – affected by the weather.
With the overwhelming support of over 600 human participants and 265 dogs, the volunteer-driven event even made the Singapore Book of Records for being the largest human-canine run in local history.
Flagging off the dog walk at 7:15 p.m. was Guest-of-Honour, Social and Family Development Minister Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, who mingled freely with participants and their dogs at the carnival.
We are touched and heartened by the positive responses of the run participants, despite the haze. Volunteers have spent 6 months preparing for the event, and many came up to tell us yesterday that they decided to come to show their support, despite the climbing PSI, because they knew the heavens would smile on us. True enough, the haze miraculously cleared at East Coast Park just before the run, granting us clear skies and a beautiful, memorable event for all!
— Dr. Siew Tuck Wah, President of SOSD
The funds raised from Light Up Your Life Run 2015 will go towards the operating expenses for both charities. It will also support SOSD to implement more community-focused initiatives such as Healing Paws’ Animal Assisted Activities (AAA) programme, which benefits both people and animals and increases social awareness.