Re-emphasizing love and support for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (PWIDs)

Contributed by Evelyn Leong, Director, Corporate Development & Outreach, Movement for the Intellectually Disabled of Singapore (MINDS)

My Hero Brother
by Yonatan Nir

The film My Hero Brother truly brings out the unspoken inner emotions of those with special needs and their caregivers. Asians are often less expressive in sharing emotions toward their loved ones. Yonatan Nir, director of the film, clearly showcases that love and care towards Persons with Intellectual Disabilities (PWIDs) and illustrate through the film that PWIDS are alike anyone else, requiring understanding and acceptance. What touches me most are the strong bonds fostered between the siblings in the film that empower them to make suitable choices as they embark on the demanding trek through the Indian Himalayas.

The film allowed viewers like myself to realise how love and support can aid in resolving the conflicts that surface as the siblings deal with formidable physical and emotional challenges. As representatives of MINDS watching the film, we could clearly relate to what the PWIDs and their caregivers went through. It is indeed very real.

Post screening talk with sister of guest presenter Nur Alfian Hakim Bin Halim shares her experience caring for a PWID with the audience.
Post screening talk with guest presenter Nur Alfian Hakim Bin Halim (second from right) and his sister (left), as she shares her experience caring for a PWID

Let us work together to advocate for and recognise PWIDs’ ability, empowering them to learn and explore like anyone who are given the opportunity. I am glad there are some support programmes and systems in-place to aid many PWIDs to ignite their potential and push themselves beyond their perceived limitations. Fernvale Gardens School 2017 Valedictorian Nur Alfian Hakim Bin Halim and his sister are wonderful real life examples of a PWID and a caregiver, whose real life experiences have shed light on their challenges and heart warming moments. Their sharing reiterates the importance of the emotional pillars that siblings give to each other, helping to hone them to who they are today.

Thumbs up to the cast and film director. We need many more of such works to allow the unspoken to be made known to all.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of the Asian Film Archive.

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