This is part of my “Little Lit Author’s First…” series. Today we feature Part 2 of the interview with Edmund Lim, author of Singapore’s First Jewish-themed children’s chapter book, “Jacob Ballas”. He tells us more about the Jewish community in Singapore.
Linn Shekinah: What are some of the legacies of Jacob Ballas?
Edmund Lim: His philanthropy has benefited schools and organizations in Singapore and overseas. For instance, he donated generously to St Andrews and the various charities. His trust fund facilitated the building of Jacob Ballas Centre and the Jacob Ballas Children’s Garden.
Linn Shekinah: Why should Singaporeans know about the Jewish culture and the small community living in our midst? How has the Jewish community contributed to Singapore?
Edmund Lim: Lots to know. We have a special and small community of Jewish people. Though the community is small, they have contributed significantly to our nation. Our first chief minister, David Marshall is a Jew.
The Jewish people contributed to the legal (David Marshall, Prof Pinsler, Joseph Grimbery, Harry Elias), medical (Prof Yahya Cohen) and economic (FJ Benjamin & family, Sassoon’s Coffee Bean Tea Leaf), among others.
Linn Shekinah: What advice will you give us to get to know this small community better?
Edmund Lim: When we interact with the various communities in Singapore, it helps to do so with thoughtfulness, sincerity and a heart of caring friendship.