Show these Pioneer Generation Package videos to your parents, grandparents

Having trouble understanding the Pioneer Generation Package, or explaining it to your elders? These videos may help. (Screengrab from video)

Having trouble explaining the Pioneer Generation Package (PGP) and how it works to your parents or grandparents? These all-dialect clips may help.

With the help of a local creative agency, and starting with Hokkien, and then Teochew, the government has started rolling out videos in local vernacular dialects — the most recently-introduced one being in Cantonese.

Watch it here:

Its maiden effort in Hokkien, entitled “Fortune Teller”, features an elderly lady who approaches a fortune teller to share her woes with aging and her declining health. Since it was first uploaded on 28 March, it has garnered more than 100,000 views on its YouTube channel. The video was also aired on MediaCorp's Channel 8.

Meanwhile, the clip done in Teochew, called "Crosstalk", features an amusing conversation between two male entertainers, where the younger devises an intelligent way to help his friend remember the package benefits. It, in turn, has seen a respectable 8,340 views since being uploaded five days ago.

Watch it here:

Local blogger Lee Kin Mun, better known as mrbrown, shared a link to the clip on his public Facebook page saying he enjoyed hearing the lilt of the Teochew dialect in it.

“And the more burning question, where is the Cantonese version?” he added, jokingly asking if he would need to step in to produce it himself.

Taxi driver Koh Sim Siong, 65, said he first read about the Hokkien video in the Chinese evening newspapers and went online in search of it.

“It was a highly entertaining way to explain the benefits,” he told Yahoo Singapore, adding that he also saw the Teochew video and forwarded the link to it to his friends via WhatsApp. “Several of my friends have seen it, too!”

Watch the Hokkien version of the video here:

According to the Media Development Authority’s Free-to-Air Radio Programme Code, all Chinese programmes must be  presented in Mandarin, with exceptions given to operas, dialect interviews (where voiceovers must be added), select terms for food and “sparingly”-used dialogue or songs, as long as the context justifies usage.

These rules were in place since shortly after then-Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew introduced the “Speak Mandarin” campaign in 1979, to encourage the use of Mandarin.