We commemorate 50 years of National Service (NS50) in 2017. For 50 years, NS has fulfilled Singapore's critical need for defence and security, and provided the peace and stability upon which we have built our country. NS50 is thus an important milestone in Singapore's nation-building journey, and an opportune time for us to recognise the contributions of past and present national servicemen.

The theme for NS50 is "From My Generation To Yours". In 2017, more than one million would have enlisted for National Service. As we commemorate NS50, we want to thank the generations of national servicemen who have served with dedication and pride. Singaporeans' continued support for NS is also critical in enabling this duty to be passed down from one generation to the next. The NS50 logo thus depicts two generations of national servicemen saluting.

A Year-Long Commemoration and Celebration

Singaporeans can look forward to the following in 2017:

Feb 2017

- Opening of NS Gallery

- Chingay Parade

May 2017

- Army Open House/ NS50 Showcase

Jun 2017

- NS50 Showcase

Jul 2017

- NS50 Recognition Campaign

- SAF Day

Aug 2017

- NS50 Week

- NS50 Recognition Campaign

- National Day Celebrations

Other Commemorative Initiatives

- NS50 Recognition Package (details available by Jun 2017)

- NS50 Dinner Reception (second half of 2017)

- Community outreach initiatives, e.g., father-child NS themed camp, engagement programmes for educational institutions (Mar 2017 onwards)

- Online activities through NS50.sg, MINDEF/SAF & MHA/Home Team social media channels (Feb 2017 onwards)

a) NS50 Showcase. In conjunction with the Army Open House, an NS50 Showcase will be held at the F1 Pit Building from 24-29 May 2017. The Showcase is open to the public and will be an experiential exhibition where visitors can learn about the evolution of NS through the past 50 years, as well as achievements of our national servicemen in defending and safeguarding Singapore. Parts of the Showcase will travel to Punggol (2-4 June 2017) and Jurong East (9-11 June 2017).

b) NS50 Week. Spanning 1-10 August 2017, NS50 Week will be a time for everyone to show support for NS. The month of August bears historical significance as it marks the enlistment of the first batch of full-time national servicemen in 1967 and their subsequent entry into the Reserve.

There will be a series of community engagement events throughout NS50 Week. This includes various ground-up activities organised by the Advisory Council on Community Relations in Defence (ACCORD) , such as an NS50 themed picnic in partnership with Families for Life. Singapore Discovery Centre will also organise bus tours to sites of NS significance such as the SAFTI Military Institute and Pasir Laba Camp. To encourage public demonstrations of support for NS, ACCORD is reaching out to employers and the community to put out appreciation messages for our national servicemen during NS50 Week. More details on the NS50 Week will be made available at a later date.

c) NS50 Recognition Campaign. As part of the NS50 Recognition Campaign starting from SAF Day on 1 July 2017 to the end of NS50 Week on 10 August 2017, businesses and organisations will be providing national servicemen with discounts and benefits. They will also publicly declare their support for NS and national servicemen through pledge ceremonies.

d) NS50 Recognition Package. To thank national servicemen for their contributions to Singapore's defence, MINDEF and MHA will be giving every past and present national serviceman an NS50 Recognition Package containing $100 worth of vouchers. This includes those who enlist in the 2017 enlistment cohort. In addition, national servicemen who are currently serving or have served Operationally Ready National Service (ORNS) will be offered a year of SAFRA/HomeTeamNS membership. For more information, please see Annex A.

e) NS50 Dinner Reception. National servicemen, their families and employers, and companies who have shown strong support for NS over the past 50 years will also be recognised at the NS50 Dinner Reception later in the year.

f) Other Commemorative Initiatives. There will be a range of initiatives reaching out to the wider community, such as a father-child NS themed camp and engagement programmes for educational institutions. The theme of NS50 will also be woven into various events throughout the year, including the Chingay Parade, SAF Day and National Day celebrations.

g) Online engagement. To reach out to NSmen and more, NS50 commemorative efforts will also be held online, primarily through the NS50 portal (NS50.sg). Key highlights include an online campaign where Singaporeans will be invited to help build a photo montage representing the nation's support of our national servicemen, as well as an online music album featuring specially-composed NS-related songs by various local celebrities and the SAF Music and Drama Company, which will be made available free. MINDEF will also release a series of NS50 videos in mid-2017 on the cyberpioneerTV YouTube channel and cyberpioneer Facebook, where national servicemen past and present, their families, and the wider community share their thoughts on National Service. MHA will also release a web-series on Home Team national servicemen from February 2017.

Source: MINISTRY OF DEFENCE (MINDEF)