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Growth in cash donations signals importance of sustaining the arts despite pandemic

26 Aug 2022

  • Singapore’s arts scene bolstered by an 18% increase in cash donations in 2021, amounting to $26 million
  • Patron of the Arts Awards 2022 reveals greater innovation and wider partnerships in the arts, reflecting trends identified through the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022
  • 323 patrons honoured for their contributions in 2021, with an increase in first time donors and cash donations for Singapore’s arts

Singapore, 24 August 2022 – As Singapore’s arts sector looks towards a positive post-pandemic future, the National Arts Council (NAC) pays tribute to patrons who gave over $32 million to the arts in 2021. 323 patrons were honoured at the 39th edition of the Patron of the Arts Awards (POAA), comprising a total of 244 individuals and 79 organisations. These patrons continued to support Singapore’s resilient arts scene as the nation welcomed the arts back to life, with an 18 per cent increase in cash donations in 2021, amounting to over $26 million. These generous contributions will be recognised at the POAA 2022 ceremony, to be held tomorrow on 25 August 2022 at the Singapore Chinese Cultural Centre (SCCC) and officiated by the Minister for Culture, Community and Youth & Second Minister for Law, Mr Edwin Tong.

On recognising the impact of arts philanthropy in 2021, Mr Edwin Tong said, “Thanks to the contributions from our patrons, the arts sector was able to continue its important mission of inspiring Singaporeans, deepening our sense of belonging and national identity, and strengthening our commitment to building a better future together. Our experience over the past two years has shown us that when we have a common cause and work together in partnership, we can bring the arts in Singapore to greater heights. As we launch Our SG Arts Plan (2023-2027), which will set the direction for the arts landscape for the next 5 years, I look forward to an even more vibrant arts scene.”

Diversified giving to the arts in 2021 with sizeable increase in first-time patrons

POAA 2022 marks the evolution of arts philanthropy in Singapore in tandem with the local arts landscape. The past year witnessed a growing number of supporters, where over 30 per cent of this year’s awardees were first-time patrons. This upward trend is in line with findings from the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022, which indicated optimism among current and future corporate givers.

New awardees, such as Mr Lim Lung Tieng, Dr Charles Toh, Mr Christopher Chuah, Diana Koh Foundation, Mr Osbert Lyman, Ms Tanya Shariff & Mr Sriram Vaidhya, and Sun Venture Pte Ltd have provided all-rounded support to elevate the local arts scene. Mr Chuah, a recipient of the Distinguished Patron of the Arts, was awarded for contributing to self-employed artists presenting works through livestreamed performances. He shared, “The performing arts in particular had felt the brunt of COVID-19 with limited opportunities for performances and gigs. As an avid supporter of the local arts scene, I wanted to provide an online platform for our performing artists to sustain, hone their craft, and at the same time, bring enjoyment and uplift our community during difficult times.”

Meaningful contributions provide access to arts education, diverse arts offerings, and promote inclusivity

Meanwhile, Ngee Ann Kongsi provided the largest donation of over $6.2 million cumulatively to two local arts institutions, Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts (NAFA) and LASALLE College of the Arts. The donations supported arts scholarships and awards for students in NAFA, and LASALLE’s campus extension, respectively. Long-time patrons gave other significant donations towards advancing arts education - Keppel Care Foundation, which established the Keppel Centre for Art Education at National Gallery Singapore, and Dr Stephen Riady, who gave to Intercultural Theatre Institute in support of arts education in the performing arts.

Diversified giving leaves a lasting impact on beneficiaries through innovative ways. Beyond cash donations, individuals and organisations have provided in-kind contributions through spaces, professional skills equipping, as well as empowering artists and arts groups through capability building.

UOL Group Limited, a Distinguished Patron of the Arts recipient, sponsored spaces at their hotel galleries to inspire art appreciation among the public and to raise awareness of creating a more inclusive society through ART:DIS’ artworks. They also provided spaces to facilitate meaningful causes, such as International Women’s Day, and introduce artists from diverse backgrounds, such as special needs artist Genine Tham. 

Ms Angela Tan, Executive Director, ART:DIS, shared, “Art is a universal language that transcends age, race, and abilities. UOL Group has enabled persons with disabilities to express themselves, empowered them to gain confidence and engaged a wider community. We hope to strengthen our social fabric through art, and co-create an inclusive and cohesive society.”

Separately, Patron of the Arts Award recipient Gateway Theatre and Friend of the Arts Award recipient Elmwood Group boosted artists’ capability development by providing their expertise for sound design and accounting services, respectively.

The trend of in-kind giving to the arts, such as through capability building, professional services, technology, advertising spaces and physical spaces is expected to grow in the coming years, according to the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022. It also found that despite being more resource intensive, donors are more assured that in-kind giving will create a tangible impact on beneficiaries.

Insights from the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022

NAC released the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022 today, a timely follow-on from the Arts Philanthropy Study in 2016. The research revealed that the arts philanthropy landscape in Singapore is set to grow, with one-third of corporates intending to give to the arts in the next three years, while more than half of the current corporate arts philanthropists also plan to increase their giving to the arts. This augurs well for recognition accorded to the positive impact and value which the arts brings to our society and economy.

Key trends identified by the research included the shift of the philanthropy landscape towards sustainable giving through partnerships, such as employee-based donation schemes, employee-based volunteering, and collaborative philanthropy. Other highlights include:

  • Complex challenges posed by the pandemic were found to require a collaborative, ‘many helping hands’ approach, where individuals, leaders and organisations, come together to work towards a shared goal. Six in ten corporations have either given or intend to start giving through collaborative philanthropy to achieve greater collective impact. Such collaborations are amplified by initiatives such as the Sustain the Arts (stART) Fund, in which NAC partners with the private sector to boost the long-term sustainability of small arts organisations, and nurture a culture of giving to the arts.
  • The research also found that beneficiaries can foster more meaningful partnerships and increase their engagement with corporate donors by understanding their business objectives.

The research results will give the local arts community a relevant and deeper understanding of arts philanthropy trends and best-in-class practices. Artists and arts organisations can glean insights on growth areas for arts philanthropy, which could help develop strategies, especially in expanding cross-industry opportunities and partnering with corporate businesses.

Engaging patrons on arts philanthropy for future growth

Arts philanthropy continues to be a channel for the public, private and people sectors to support the sustainable growth of Singapore’s arts scene and to build a creative and cohesive society. With plans for the launch of the next iteration of Our SG Arts Plan currently underway, NAC’s efforts through POAA and the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022 help to reinforce the importance of collaboration with the arts community and the wider public to strengthen the long-term sustainability of the sector. 

Mrs Rosa Daniel, Chief Executive of NAC, noted, “The sector’s achievements over the last two years was strongly supported by the growing number of patrons who attest to the positive impact and value of the arts in Singapore.  NAC is committed to exploring deeper partnerships with the public, people and private sectors to collectively build a connected society, distinctive city, and a creative economy through Our SG Arts Plan (2023-2027) We thank our patrons for your continued dedication and support of the Singapore arts scene and hope that you have found this journey with the community meaningful.”

POAA 2022 recognises contributions made between 1 January and 31 December 2021 and is a celebration of our arts patrons. The POAA ceremony will be held as a hybrid event at SCCC and aired live on NAC's Facebook platform at 5pm on 25 August 2022, providing the public an opportunity to honour the arts patrons online. 

Join the conversation via Facebook and Instagram by following @NACSingapore and #POAA2022. More information on the POAA can be found at

Hi-resolution images may be found in the Digital Media Kit here:


For media enquiries, please contact:

Hilary Tan

Senior Associate

Tate Anzur

DID: +65 8727 4845


Adrian Chue

Deputy Director, Communications & Marketing

National Arts Council

DID: +65 6346 9506




The Patron of the Arts Awards was instituted in 1983 to recognise organisations and individuals that have contributed towards the promotion of cultural and artistic activities in Singapore. The Patron of the Arts Awards 2022 recognises contributions made between 1 January and 31 December 2021.

Award Categories for Organisations
Cash and In-Kind Contributions

  • The Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award recognises contributions of $1,500,000 and above.

  • The Patron of the Arts Award recognises contributions between $300,000 and $1,499,999.

  • The Friend of the Arts Award recognises contributions between $50,000 and $299,999.

Award Categories for Individuals
Cash and In-Kind Contributions

  • The Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award recognises contributions of $100,000 and above.

  • The Patron of the Arts Award recognises contributions between $50,000 and $99,999.

  • The Friend of the Arts Award recognises contributions between $10,000 and $49,999.

Award Categories for Corporates & Individuals
Artwork and Loan Artefacts

  • The Distinguished Supporter of the Arts Awards recognises contributions of $1,000,000 and above.

  • The Supporter of the Arts Award recognises contributions below $1,000,000



Total Number of Awardees

Total Amount Awarded





Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award

Patron of the Arts Award

Friend of the Arts Award









Type of Patrons





  • 3 organisations and 26 individuals received the Distinguished Patron of the Arts Award

  • 12 organisations and 23 individuals received the Patron of the Arts Award

  • 64 organisations and 195 individuals received the Friend of the Arts Award

Note: Contributions are accurate as of 1 August 2022.



Distinguished Patron of the Arts

(Contributions of $1,500,000 and above)

(Contributions of $100,000 and above)

The Ngee Ann Kongsi


UOL Group Limited

Albert Chiu Sin Chuen

Christopher Chuah Chee Kian

Christopher Ho & Rosy Ho

Danny Yong – Yong Hon Kong Foundation

Dews of Joy Foundation

Estate of Chng Seok Tin

Finian and Fiona Tan

Goh Swee Chen

Goh Yew Lin

Jeremy Lee Chen Seong

Kris Foundation - Kris Tan Lay Peng

Lim Lung Tieng

Max Goh Way Siong

Pang Lim

Pierre Lorinet & Bolor Lorinet

Stephen Riady Foundation

Sybil Lau E Jen

Teo Kiang Ang

Terry Tan & Harris Zaidi

Toh Chai Soon Charles

Patron of the Arts

(Contributions between $300,000 and $1,499,999)

(Contributions between $50,000 and $99,999)

Gateway Theatre

JCDecaux Singapore

Keppel Care Foundation

Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple

Marina Bay Sands

Orchard Turn Retail Investment Pte Ltd (ION Orchard)

SPH Media Limited

Sun Venture

Tay Chay Bing Education Fund

Temasek Foundation

Wing Tai Foundation

Anthonia Hui & Leonardo Drago

Arnoud De Meyer

Chng Hak-Peng

David Heng

Diana Koh Foundation

John & Pauline Foo

Karim Family Foundation

Marcel Smits

Osbert Lyman

Priscila Teo

Sheila Lim Siok Keng

Shruti Hora

Tanya Shariff & Sriram Vaidhya

Teo Chen Hian

Teo Hark Piang

Vivian P J Chandran

Wee Chwee Heng

William & Judith Bollinger

Yeo Eng Koon

Friend of the Arts

(Contributions between $50,000 and $299,999)

(Contributions between $10,000 and $49,999)

AL Wealth Partners Pte Ltd

Alfa Tech

Allen & Overy LLP

Applied Materials Southeast Asia Pte Ltd

Bank Of Communications



BNP Paribas

C K Holdings

Chang Cheng Mee Wah Food Ind Pte Ltd

Citibank N.A. Singapore

City Developments Limited

CLS International (1993) Pte Ltd

Composers and Authors Society of Singapore (COMPASS)

Credit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank

Deloitte Singapore

Deutsche Bank AG

ECCA Family Foundation Ltd


Elmwood Group Private Limited

EnGro Coporation Limited

ExxonMobil Asia Pacific Pte Ltd

Golden Compass School

Ho Bee Foundation

Holywell Foundation Limited

Hong Leong Foundation

Huajiang Properties Pte Ltd

IMC Group Asia (S'pore) Pte Ltd

JCCI Singapore Foundation Limited

John Swire & Sons

Lam Soon Singapore Pte Ltd

LCH Lockton Pte Ltd

Leung Kai Fook Medical Co Pte Ltd

M1 Limited

Mapletree Investments Pte Ltd

Mingxin Foundation

Mocha Chai Laboratories

OUE Foundation

Poco Productions Pte Ltd

Premier Structure Pte Ltd

Qualcomm Foundation

Samsung Electronics Singapore Pte Ltd

Sarika Connoisseur Café

Shopee Singapore Pte Ltd

Singapore International Foundation

SMRT Corporation Ltd

SPH Foundation Limited

Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre

Tan Ean Kiam Foundation

Terra Foundation for American Art

The Grace, Shua and Jacob Ballas II Charitable Trust

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Limited

The New Eden Charitable Trust

The Silent Foundation Ltd

The Tan Chin Tuan Foundation

Trans Technology Pte Ltd

Union Gas Holdings Limited

WeWork Singapore Pte Ltd

Witness Collection

Xctuality Pte Ltd

Yangzheng Foundation

Adrian & Susan Peh

Aeson Wong

Aileen Tang

Alejandro Cavazos

Alexey Rumyantsev

Alvin De Souza

Andre Yeap

Andrea Friedman

Andreas and Doris Sohmen Pao

Andress Goh

Ang Chee Guan

Ang Kiam Meng

Anne Lee

Arthur E H Lim

Arthur Fong

Bianca Cheo

Bobby Lim Chye Huat

Catherine Poyen and David Zemans

Cham Tao Soon

Chan Heng Chee

Chan Heng Loon Alan

Chan Heng Wing

Chan Kok Hua 曾国和

Chan Tze Law

Chan Wei Shing

Chang Yee Lee, Lyn

Chase Ma

Chew Kheng Chuan

Chia Chor Meng

Chong Chan Meng & Lim Sing Yuen

Chua Khee Chin

Chua Lee Hoong

Chua Sock Koong

Conrad Lim & Andrea Giam

CY Loo

Daniel Teo Tong How

Danny Tan Koon Meng

David Ramli

Dennis Au

Derek Goh Bak Heng

Devika & Sanjiv Misra

Dong Wei

Dorian Goh

Duncan Kauffman

Eddy Ooi

Edmund Lam Kin Hong

Edmund Lin & Trina Liang-Lin

Edy H.T

Elisabeth de Rothschild

Eric Tan

Esmond Loon

Euan Murugasu

Fanny Lee Chiow Ling

Felicia Foo

Foo Kok Wan

Francois Dubrulle

Friends & Family of Loh Jian Hao

Gautam & Basabi Banerjee

Geoffrey & Ai Ai Wong

Geraldine Kan

Gerard Chuah

Goh-Tan Choo Leng

Gralf Sieghold

Han Seng Juan & Susanna Han

Ho Kiam Seong

Huang Peh Linde

Huang Zhuangrong

Jacinta Tay

Jacqueline Ho, Esq

Janek Schergen

Jimmy Lim

Jimmy Yim

Jin Lu

Joel Lee Wei Bin

John & Andrea Friedman

Joshua Ip

Joy Tan

Julian Chang

Kan Shook Wah

Keith Magnus

Kevin Burke

Kho Wai Peng

Koh Lin-Net

Koh Yiak Tee

Kris Wiluan

Kwok Kian Woon

Latiff Mohidin

Lee Huay Leng

Lee Li Ming

Lee Sik Khoon (nee Marie Lee)

Leng Hoe Lon

Leong Wai Leng

Lim Boh Soon

Lim Cheng Wan

Lim Chin Boon

Lim Phang Hong

Lim Seh Chun

Loh Hwui-Shian Michelle

Low Kah Buay

Low Sin Leng

Lum Wen Yan, Emlyn & Lum Kwan Sung

Magdeline Goei

Manraj Sekhon

Marie Elaine Teo

Marjorie Chu

Mary & Raj Rajkumar

Michael Lien

Mr & Mrs Arthur Lee

Myrna Susan Thomas

Nancy Tan

Ng Nam Teck

Oei Ley

Oliver Bettin

Paige Parker & Jim Rogers

Pamela Tan

Pang Kok Lian

Paul Tseng Seng Loke

Pauline Chan

Peter Seah

Peter Yang

Phua Cheng Foo

Ping & Jason Coates

Poh Choon Ann

Preetha Pillai

Priscylla Shaw

Rachel Teo

Raymundo A. Yu

Rogerio Bernardo

Rohan & Shirene Shanmughalingam

Ronald Wong

Rose Anne de Pampelonne

Ruddy Tampi

Seah & Siak

Seng Song Wen

Siti Adiyati

Steve Tay Soo Hoe

Stuart James McLelland

Sum Yee Loong

Suon Kuok

Tan Chuan Yong

Tan Hee Nam

Tan How Ing

Tan Hsiao Wei

Tan June Teng Colin

Tan Kwang Hwee

Tan Lee Kum

Tan Meng Cheng Ivan

Tan Sia Lei

Tan Sook Yee

Tay Thuan Wee

Teo Sze Lin, Claire

Terrence Hong

Theresa Foo

Thomas Zuellig & Mary Ling Zuellig

Toshihiko Takahashi

Valerie Velasco

Vanessa & Darren Iloste

Vemala Rajamanickam

Victor & Michelle Sassoon

Wang Lili

Wee Siew Kim

William & Mavis Tok

William Koh Chee Wei

Wong Hong Ching

Wu Peihui

Yeo Eng Huat

Yeo Siew Haip

Yeow Chee Keong

Yong Ying-I

Yu-En & Celine Ong

Yvonne Tham

Zaibun Siraj & Paul Drayson

Note: Recipients who wish to remain anonymous are not listed in this Annex.


The full report can be accessed here:

Infographic on the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022 1.1
Infographic on the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022
Infographic on the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022
Infographic on the NAC Arts Philanthropy Corporate Giving Research 2022
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