14 November 2015 – Over a hundred lawyers, legal service officers and ex-offenders pitted their skills on the futsal pitch at the East Coast Park for the prize of the inaugural Chief Justice’s Cup. After three hours of play where the 16 teams were pitched in four groups of round-robin eliminations, the team from HEB-Ashram won the coveted cup on a score of 3-2against runners-up from Pertapis Halfway Home.
Mr Thio Shen Yi, Chairman of the Academy’s Corporate Social Responibility (“CSR”) Sub-Committee said “The CJ’s Cup is an initiative of the CSR Sub-Committee and will be an annual charity affair in the legal industry. The winning team will keep the challenge trophy for the year, and compete to retain it the next year.”
The charity futsal jointly organised by the Singapore Academy of Law (“SAL”) and the Yellow Ribbon Fund (“YRF”) raised $62,000 for the YRF-SAL STAR (Skills Training Assistance to Re-start) Bursary which provides educational bursaries to financially disadvantaged ex-offenders for vocational and skills training. The YRF-SAL bursary was first started in 2013, where the Academy raised over $300,000 in a charity concert showcasing talents in the legal profession. This bursary is part of a larger YRF STAR Bursary which has supported financially needy ex-offenders seeking vocational and skills training since 2010.
Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon said “The Singapore Academy of Law has chosen to support the YRF project because it is an extremely important and meaningful initiative to help facilitate the longer term reintegration of ex-offenders into society.”
To date, the YRF Bursary has benefited more than 85 ex-offenders who received financial help through the Bursary and 33 of them have graduated with recognised diplomas.
One such example is Singapore Polytechnic student Faizal (name has been changed), a 34-year-old who was in and out of prison since he was 16.
“I mixed around with bad company and began taking drugs in secondary school,” he said. “My friends had all started working while I was still in prison. I missed out on a lot, I also saw the older inmates and realised that I would end up like them if I continued on the same path.” Faizal was released in August 2014. In early 2015, he applied for the YRF STAR Bursary, which he was informed about by a counsellor while in prison. He was selected as a Bursary recipient and enrolled in the Diploma in Chemical Engineering course at Singapore Polytechnic soon after. Attorney-General Mr V K Rajah said “The CJ’s Cup is an excellent opportunity for members of the legal fraternity to come together in a spirit of sportsmanship to support a worthy cause.”
Mr Thio adds “The CSR Sub-Committee has aspirations that the CJ’s Cup will see greater participation and involve more of the legal community in subsequent years and will be a high-profile event everyone in the legal profession can look forward to.”
The Singapore Academy of Law (SAL) is a promotion and development agency for Singapore’s legal industry. Our vision is to make Singapore the legal hub of Asia. SAL aims to drive legal excellence through developing thought leadership, world class infrastructure and legal solutions. We do this by building up the intellectual capital of the legal profession by enhancing legal knowledge, raising the international profile of Singapore law, promoting Singapore as a centre for dispute resolution and improving the efficiency of legal practice through the use of technology.
As a body established by statute, SAL also undertakes statutory functions such as stakeholding services, appointment of Senior Counsel, Commissioners of Oath and Notaries Public. SAL is headed by the Honourable the Chief Justice Sundaresh Menon. We have over 10,000 members comprising members of the Bench, the Bar, Legal Service Officers, corporate counsel, legal academics and foreign lawyers. More information can be found at .