We organised an outing to take a group of children with intellectual disability to Gardens by the Bay. We went to their group home the last school holiday and played games with them. This time we decided to take them outdoors for some fun. A total of 4 families joined in, and 1 more couldn’t join us but chipped in to help us defray our transport and food cost. (Thanks, Sam!)
All of my kids came along, and 3 of them brought along a friend each. I like to expose our kids to children who are not as fortunate as themselves to help them develop empathy and compassion. The kids were first briefed about the children we were going to receive so that they would have an understanding of what to expect and so the younger ones will not blurt out any remarks which may hurt the feelings of the children.
We started the evening by heading over to Texas Chicken for their dinner. We had called earlier to pre-order the food and everything was smooth and orderly. Besides Texas Chicken, there is a row of casual dining including Peach Garden noodle house, Hill Street coffee shop and Union Square café serving hotdogs. Sprinkled throughout the Gardens are various cafes and they even have Satay by the Bay.
We bought tickets to the Sky Way bridge and queued to go up. Tickets are at $3 for children and $5 for adults. You can either take the lift or walk up 7 flights of stairs. Some of the kids were afraid of crossing the bridge and we encouraged them.
We all made it over to the other side and were greeted with this beautiful scenery. We saw a different side of our friends as they laughed and posed for pictures. They were all in high spirits as they mingled freely with our children. Some of them are so sweet and endearing and they seem to have no cares in the world.
After we descended from the Sky bridge, the children formed a big circle and played Frisbee at the empty patch of grass in front of the exit of the bridge. Then we distributed lanterns and walked as a group around the gardens. We passed a koi pond with lots of fishes.
As we walked, we came to this humongous statue of a sleeping baby. It seemed to be floating in mid air! This 7 ton bronze cast sculpture is gifted to the Gardens by renowned sculptor Marc Quinn.
Further on, we saw some huge and colourful dinosaurs. Of course, the boys were drawn to it. The dinosaurs are made of cloth and there seems to be light bulbs inside it. It is probably an installation for the mid-autumn festival.
We reached the end and we walked back to the Supertrees as there was a simple 10 minutes light and sound show. There is one show at 7.45pm and one at 8.45pm. It is nice to just sit back and relax with your family and friends and take in the whole atmosphere. Somehow, it reminded me of my childhood where we used to watch the musical fountain in Sentosa.
The kids were getting tired and asked if we were going home soon. We told them yes, right after we send our friends up their van. Time to say our goodbyes and till we meet again next time!
You can book this wheelchair transport service for $200 per outing. It can accommodate 1 wheelchair and about 5 family members. Would be great to take wheelchair-bound grandparents out for a birthday meal or to see the Christmas lights. Each van can take a maximum of 3 wheelchairs.
One of the mummy asked if anyone wanted to go and have dessert at Sogurt as the kids did a great job of mingling and taking care of our friends. All of them shouted “Yes!” Didn’t they say they were very tired… ?
Sogurt is a DIY yoghurt place where you first choose the flavour of your yoghurt then you add the toppings. Payment is by weight. I instructed the kids not to take too much as they often can’t finish it and besides, it would cost quite a lot! They were good children, and they didn’t over-do it. It cost me $30 for the 8 of them. (Remember to ask for the 10% student discount).
Do let me know if anyone is keen to join us and I’ll keep you informed about our outing the next school holidays!
Sane tip: Gardens by the Bay is a large grounds and the kids can have all the space they need to run, roam, and shout as much as they like. I’m going to take them back there again with their bicycles!
Save tip: Pack a picnic, throw in their wheels and a Frisbee and you’ll have great fun all for nothing!
Silveray Pte Ltd
There are a lot of wheelchair bound elderly around who have been kept indoors as they cannot afford the transport to go out. Do take a look at the silveray website and contact them if you are able to sponsor a silveray ride.