Community spirit, cooperation and a commitment to fitness — sporting hallmarks that the Civil Service Club (CSC) aims to galvanise across Singapore’s Public Service sector with the Public Service STAR Games. The 2023 edition attracted over 30,000 participants from 39 agencies competing in 69 games, from team sports like futsal and dragon boating to precision-based individual sports, such as golf, snooker and darts. 



Driving the enthusiastic participation of STAR Games are the various Sports Liaison Officers (SLOs), who coordinate events, facilitate stakeholder communication, manage administrative tasks, and promote sporting activities within their agencies. These individuals were honoured at the STAR Games Awards Presentation Ceremony on 6 March 2024 at the Ruby Ballroom, CSC @ Tessensohn.



The ceremony, attended by members from various agencies, featured an eight-course dinner and an award presentation. Mr Tan Hock Leong, CSC Chairman, Board of Games, gave out the prizes and trophies, commending the sense of unity and sportsmanship cultivated through the Games. "Sporting excellence is not the only goal; we also strive to forge friendships and camaraderie among Public Service Officers," he said.


Looking into the future, Mr Tan shared plans to expand the STAR Games to include sports like archery, canoeing and touch rugby, and to leverage SportsSG facilities for greater spectatorship and extended play.



Mr Tan called on all SLOs to contribute to these enhancements. “Your support and leadership are vital to surpassing last year’s games. I am confident we can achieve this.”



Striving for excellence  


The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) claimed the Championship title in Division I of the STAR Games once again, marking their 13th triumph with 84 points, clinching victories in nine of the 18 championship events.


Mr Dinesh Verlachamy, a deputy commander at the Singapore Civil Defence Force and SLO of  MHA, credited their success to a combination of commitment, teamwork and planning.


“Our players have put in countless hours of training, focused on their strengths and continuously pushed themselves to improve,” he said. “Additionally, our sports convenors have played a crucial role in developing effective game plans and providing the support and guidance needed for our teams to excel.”


Forging Closer Bonds


The Ministry of Manpower (MOM) achieved a notable first, securing the Division II top spot with 19 points, thanks to their success in the National Steps Challenge and strong showings in futsal and 7-a-side football.


Mr Adriel Tan, Chairman of MOM’s Active Lifestyle Club (ALC) for 2024/2025, attributed their outstanding performance to the ministry's dedication to team unity and support. Despite demanding schedules, MOM officers consistently prioritised weekly training sessions after office hours and intensified their preparations as competition dates approached.



“The joy is in seeing MOM officers bond through sports. Wining in Division II is the icing on the cake,” said Mr Tan. “My wish for MOM is to defend our title and, more importantly, increase sports participation as an organisation.”


Inspiring with zeal


At the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), Mr Ian Chow's dedication as an SLO and Vice-President of Sports is evident. His fervour for sports is as much a part of him as his commitment to social service, a trait that propelled his team toward victory. Competing in diverse events from bowling to football, he stands as a testament to the athlete's spirit. Outside of STAR Games, Mr Chow also enjoys rock climbing.



His enthusiasm for sports have enhanced team bonds and elevated participation levels. He believes in the power of sports to not only connect people but also to encourage a cohesive and collaborative spirit. This ethos was visible in MSF's impressive victories in team events like the 7-a-side football and futsal games, a testament to the camaraderie and collective effort Mr Chow champions.



Beyond the competition, Ian sees the STAR Games as a catalyst for a broader lifestyle change among Public Service Officers. “Exercising doesn’t have to be just for the Games, or as part of your ministry’s sports interest groups. We want everyone to adopt a healthy lifestyle and be active on their own.”


Encouraging spirited participation 


The Government Technology Agency (GovTech) was lauded with the second prize for the “Highest Increase in Participation” at STAR Games 2023, reflecting the agency’s rising involvement. Mr Nicholas Kok, who is GovTech’s SLO — and whose own participation spanned badminton, pool and bowling — attributed the higher participation to SLOs’ ability to “connect with people”. 





Additionally, GovTech earned fourth place in Division II, demonstrating their cohesive and athletic excellence. Mr Kok highlighted the essence of STAR Games, emphasising that they're not just about competition but also about camaraderie. “The games are about bringing people together. We play, joke and, after each sports session, we go makan together,” he shared.



Looking forward, GovTech is determined to excel even further in the upcoming Games. Mr Kok's vision is clear: “We will definitely be playing to win next time!”


For a detailed list of the STAR Games Awards 2024 winners and the full story of the awards ceremony, click here.

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