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Retired Gymnast Lincoln Is ‘Individual All-Around’ Nice Guy
2020/2021 Harvard Prize Book (Singapore)
At 1.8m, Lincoln Forest Liqht Man always stood taller than most of his competitors; not only in physical height, but in ability and character as well. His achievements include representing Singapore in artistic gymnastics at the 2019 SEA Games, being a seven-time Singapore Olympic Foundation-Peter Lim Scholarship recipient, and The Straits Times Young Star of the Month in November 2017 awardee. He also scored a creditable 40 points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme November 2020 Examinations. The most recent addition to his list of accolades is the 2020/2021 Harvard Prize Book (Singapore) which acknowledges and encourages altruism.
Growing up in a humble background has developed compassion in the 21-year-old that sees him reaching out to help others. Lincoln has never taken the generosity he has received from others for granted, but chooses to pay forward the kindness he received. Before enlisting into National Service, he was a regular volunteer at St Luke's Hospital where he engaged the elderly patients in conversation and games like Bingo, “hoping that for the time that I was there, I could help someone there feel less lonely.” He also volunteered at Meet-The-People Sessions at Nee Soon East, offering assistance or even lending a listening ear to those seeking help.
It was an experience at an orphanage in Vietnam when he was 12 years old that sparked a desire in him to help others. “It was at this moment I realised that even though I did not have much, I still had the capacity to make someone happy. I could make someone’s life better. Since then, this has motivated me to volunteer at several organisations with the underlying motivation of making the world a better place for somebody to live in, even if it was for a short moment in time.
“Making the world a better place does not have to entail helping out in mega projects or through large organisations. Stripped down to its most basic form, I feel that it is essentially a way of life. It is how I conduct myself on a daily basis. It is as simple as asking someone how they are doing or asking my juniors what is wrong when they look distressed. Sometimes, being a decent person to be around or generally just an all-round nice guy is all this world needs. We care deeply for the ones we love, our friends and family, but that form of empathy rarely extends beyond our line of sight. I truly believe that no matter how small, acts of compassion for one another, regardless of closeness, contribute not only to making the world better place to live in but a more forgiving and amiable one as well.”
A virtual ceremony was held on 22 May 2021 to recognise recipients of the Harvard Prize Book (Singapore) 2020 award. During the ceremony, through a pre-recorded video, Lincoln recounted his experiences of being a recipient of generosity which had spurred him to pay forward the kindness to others. He encouraged fellow recipients to extend kindness beyond kin to create a more gracious society. The event included a breakout session where the like-minded participants engaged in a discussion on caring for the elderly to encourage and mutually inspire one another in continuing to do good.