Building Bonds on Bus Journeys 5: Eurasian Excursions

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Benjamin Sheares Bridge (Photo source: http://www.stasiareport.com)

For this Eurasian excursion, emerge from City Hall MRT station to take bus 16 from the Raffles Hotel bus stop. As you travel on Nicoll Highway, you will be able to see Benjamin Sheares Bridge in the distance. It’s named after an Eurasian physician who served as Singapore’s second president from 1971 to 1981.

Dr Benjamin Henry Sheares was born in 1907 when Singapore was a British Settlement. He wanted to be a doctor from young, but knew it was not going to be easy. His family was poor and places in King Edward VII College of Medicine were reserved for Europeans in the colonial days.

But, he beat the odds, entered medical college, won a scholarship, worked hard, and eventually he became Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the University of Malaya in Singapore in 1950. Talk to your child about his dreams, and share how Dr Sheares’ worked hard to succumb difficulties.

Find the Eurasian Heritage Centre within the Eurasian Community House. (Photo source: Channel NewsAsia)

Find the Eurasian Heritage Centre within the Eurasian Community House. (Photo source: Channel NewsAsia)

Your bus will bring you to Dunman Road. Alight opposite Maranatha Hall. Walk over to the Eurasian Heritage Centre at Ceylon Road. Here you’ll find out more about Eurasians in Singapore – descendants of a marital union between a European and an Asian. To try their cuisine, pop into Quentin’s Eurasian Restaurant which is conveniently located in the same building.

After finding out about the Eurasian culture and lifestyle, enjoy a hopscotch session when you return home. It’s one of the popular games that Eurasian children played in an era without electronic devices. All you need is chalk or masking tape to temporarily mark the corridor floor.

For more information read:

1. Benjamin Sheares, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Benjamin_Sheares retrieved 6 April 2015

2. Sheares, Joseph (2005), Benjamin Henry Sheares, MD, MS, FRCOG: President, Republic of Singapore 1971-1981; Obstetrician and Gynaecologist 1931-1981 A Biography, 12th August 1907-12th May 1981 retrieved 6 April 2015

3. The Straits Times Asia Report, How Singapore’s Presidents Have been Honoured retrieved 8 April 2015

4. Today Online, Eurasian Association Urges 15,000-strong Community to Enhance Ties retrieved 8 April 2015

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