Helping to Build the Bonds of Team Singapore Interview with Delane Lim

Delane Lim

TSL talks to Delane Lim, Programme Director and Trainer for the Team Singapore Camp for the 8th ASEAN Para Games (APG), about the programming, the importance of support from the Singapore community and corporate Singapore and his hopes for the APG. 

TSL: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m Delane Lim, 30,CEO for Agape Group Holdings. I occasionally exercise and involved myself in Adventure Sports. Currently, Iserve in Singapore Bowling Federation as Council Member and used to bowl recreationally and competitively when I was younger. 

For the last 3 years, we have been supporting the Special Olympics Singapore; and more recently the Singapore Cerebral Palsy Football Team, following closely on their development for the APG. 

TSL: Are you a fan of Team Singapore?

Certainly!!! So are all of our staff members at Agape Group. We are proud fans of Team Singapore.  

TSL: Tell us about the programming for the Team Singapore Camp and why it was important.

Team Singapore (TS) Camp is not an ordinary camp we usually conduct for schools and youth organisation. The framing and design of the TS Camp was uniquely calibrated so as to create a platform for athletes to have time to reflect about their stories and how they can create a legacy for themselves and sports. With a story and with envisioned legacy, this will give meaning for our competing athletes as they embark on their APG journeys in December. More importantly, their stories will inspire more Singaporeans to live life to the fullest. This edition’s APG Camp intentionally united 3 different groups of people, mainly the SEA Games 2015 Athletes, organisers (such as SSI and SDSC), corporate partners (such as OSIM, Borneo Motors, Joe & Dough and Sportslink) and the APG athletes – where we may be physically different but we are uniquely connected, supporting one another because we are One Team Singapore.  

TSL: Why is it important to build a team culture for the athletes?

A team culture is the expression of a team's values, attitudes, and beliefs about sports and competition. The success of an individual depends on the success of the TEAM. A good team culture built on positive energy, support and fun will lift everyone up, feel comfortable and supportive, and the results will show it. In the camp, we asked reflecting questions to help our athletes define Team Singapore’s culture: 

• What values do each athlete want to act as the foundation for themselves and Team Singapore? 
• What attitudes and beliefs about your sport, your team and this APG do you want to hold and share to the community 
• What are the goals that you or the team wants to pursue?
• How do you want the community to support you in the coming games? 

TSL: What was your role at the TS Camp and what was your favourite segment?

I was the programme director dressed up as a chef trainer for this year’s TS Camp. My favourite segment was the Athlete’s Café where I had the opportunity to listen to the stories from the panel and watch the APG promotional video that reflected the heartbeat and sacrifice of our athletes. Of course, not forgetting the fun painting where athletes put on their artist hat to paint an art collage together.  

TSL: There were four sessions of the TS Camp. What was your most memorable experience at the TS camp with the athletes at the APG 

All 4 sessions were uniquely memorable in their own ways. We had to creatively twist, add and change the programme activities and way of delivery to suit the profile of each group. I remembered that I had to speak in Hokkien Language in one training session as the group profile was a little older and “cheekier”. That session also helped me to become a better communicator with experienced athletes (in terms of physical age and participation age in sports).

Trainers at the TS APG Camp
Trainers from Agape Group Holdings, preparing to "serve the athletes"

TSL:  Why is it important for the community to support 1) sports and 2) the APG 3) the APG Athletes?

Because we are One Team Singapore and we are Singaporeans. If we don’t support our Singaporeans, who will? They are often our unsung sports heroes and heroines. It is important for the community to know their passions, struggles and sacrifices they been through in pursuing sports. It is their stories and their heartbeats that will influence all to live healthily and play sports actively.  

TSL: What about Corporate Singapore and does it have a role to support 1) sports and 2) the APG 3) the APG Athletes?

I believe there are many reasons why Corporate Singapore is important. As for us, we believe in giving back to our community. As an SME and social enterprise, we are not cash-rich to be able to sponsor nor we are resource-rich. But, we are rich with our skills and subject matter competency (in this case, running a camp, designing a programme). So my philosophy is “If we can’t give, we do” - both ways we are contributing to the betterment for Singapore sports and promotion of APG and their athletes. Personally, we don’t treat APG Team Singapore Camp as a corporate social responsibility project but we see it as a personal calling and a Singaporean’s responsibility to help them to discover their stories and make the stories know to the community so that corporations who are better off than us can be inspired to pay it forward in their own ways. We are thankful to SSI for that extraordinary opportunity. 

TSL: Will you be watching the APG in December? Who will you be supporting? Any athlete/sport in particular?

I will be watching my fellow secondary school alumni, Sailor Jovin Tan and Swimmer Yip Pinxiu and not forgetting my own sport I promote – Thomas Yong and Robert Ong from Tenpin Bowling. I will be in Philippines during the last few days of APG but I will be gluing my eyes on the hotel TV and Youtube to celebrate the extraordinary in my hotel room. 

Agape trainer with TS Athlete

Trainer from Agape Group Holdings with Team Singapore athlete

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