National rower Joan Poh who’s aiming to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics has been given a boost by the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund.
On 22 October, the CSTSF announced that 28-year-old Poh has become its latest beneficiary.
Poh, who’s taken time off of work as a nurse to train and try to quality for the Olympics, is currently in Canada as part of a training stint.
She is a Registered Nurse in an acute kidney dialysis unit and having no teammates and available coaching in Singapore, she is currently on no-pay leave training in Canada, with the dream of competing at the Olympics.
She is currently funding her own training and coaching requirements, including purchase of all her personal equipment.
Having come from a lower-income family and little funding, Poh has depended largely on her savings and her friends for loans to afford trainings, coaching and competition equipments.
She has also over the last three-year period juggled part-time training with a full-time nursing career; intermittently taking leave from work. More recently, she has set up a crowdfunding page to fund her last leg of journey towards Tokyo 2020 Olympics Qualification.
The grant of $3000 by the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund will assist her in managing the costs of trying to qualify for the Olympics 2020.
Said Ang Peng Siong, Chairman of the Board of the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund, “Joan has shown us that she has the drive and the determination to succeed. It is our honour to assist her in her journey to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Joan always shares how she deeply appreciates every bit of kindness she has received on this journey, and how she sees being able to chase a dream as a privilege — a responsibility she takes on very seriously. We are pleased to support her in her endeavours.”
A bronze medallist at the 2015 Southeast Asian Games in Singapore, Poh will be racing at the Qualification Regatta in April 2020 to help her qualify for Tokyo 2020.
She also came in 9th at the last Asian Games in Jakarta. The top five women scullers from Asia will be decided during the Asia Continental Qualification in end April 2020.
Said Poh, “I am thankful and grateful for the help provided by the Chiam See Tong Sports Fund. It is my duty to pay it forward.”
When asked what keeps her going despite repeated obstacles and curve balls thrown at her, she said, “I have always had a deep desire to fly the Singapore flag at the Olympics, and the hopes to trailblaze for the ones who come from less privileged, resourced, turbulent childhood, like myself. I hope to inspire others to always follow their dreams, and thank everyone who has been supportive of my journey.”
Photo: Joan Poh