Exhibition about The Lives of Women will prompt visitors to
think of how they can help to close the gender gap
Singapore, 17 January 2022: An exhibition that opens this week at the National Museum of Singapore will encourage visitors to think about the gender gap in Singapore and what they can do to help close it over the next 30 years.
The Lives of Women exhibition, which opens on 18 January, is the final instalment of a 3-part series produced by the Singapore Women’s Hall of Fame (SWHF), an initiative of the Singapore Council of Women’s Organisations (SCWO), in partnership with the National Museum of Singapore.
This final exhibition, which will run till the end of March, will look at some key issues and trends affecting women in Singapore today and pose questions about what the situation might be like in 2050.
“The issues the exhibition touches on include the caregiving burden that many women have to shoulder, and the challenges women face at the workplace. These were raised often by women during the year-long series of Conversations on Women’s Development that the Government conducted and which the SCWO helped to organise,” said SCWO President Junie Foo.
“We hope the exhibition will encourage people to continue to think and talk about these issues, and especially to think about what they can do as individuals to help shift mindsets about gender roles and to bring about the changes we need if women and men are truly to be equals in our society,” she added.
“They can find inspiration in the stories of the awesome women in the Hall of Fame. Many of our pioneering women had to overcome prejudices and other obstacles in order to achieve their dreams. They persevered, and in doing so they paved the way for future generations of women to be better able to realise their full potential.”
The Hall of Fame was launched by SCWO in 2014 to celebrate the achievements and contributions of women to Singapore, and to share the stories of our pioneering women so as to inspire others, especially young Singaporeans, to dream big, aim high, and reach for their fullest potential.
The Lives of Women exhibition, which will be launched by Senior Minister of State Sim Ann on 17 January, will be open to the public from 18 January. Admission is free. The exhibition is supported by the National Heritage Board and the Care and Share movement.
A highlight of the exhibition is the Our Singapore in 2050 message board. One part of the board will feature posts by women in the Hall of Fame about their wishes and hopes for Singapore, and for women in Singapore, in 2050.
The other part of the message board will be for visitors to the exhibition to share their vision of what life might or should be like for women in Singapore in 2050.
A second interactive feature of the exhibition is the Find Your Life Path quiz. This is for younger visitors to learn about some key choices they can make about their path in life. At the end of the quiz, they will learn which Hall of Fame woman made similar choices.
The first Lives of Women exhibition was held in 2018 and looked at what life was like for women in pre-Independence Singapore. It attracted close to 60,000 people during its 10-week run. The second exhibition, held in the last quarter of 2019, covered the period since Independence, and saw a footfall of more than 70,000 visitors.
The final instalment was due to be held in the last quarter of 2020 but had to be postponed because of the pandemic.
After the current exhibition closes, all the content of The Lives of Women exhibitions will be housed on a microsite that will be used as part of Project Awesome, a multi-pronged programme to bring to Singapore’s schoolchildren the inspiring stories of the women in the Hall of Fame.
These stories are captured in the children’s book Awesome Women of Singapore, which was published last year by SWHF in collaboration with Epigram Books. Copies of the book have been donated to every primary and secondary school, including madrasahs, and all children’s/youth homes.
The schools and homes also have access to a range of resources that will help teachers use the stories of the Awesome women to instil in students important core values and personal skills. These range from talks and themed exhibitions to lesson plans and other teaching aids.