Stories Of Impact
Supporting Disadvantaged Students: Assumption Pathway Academy
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Stories Of Impact

Stories Of Impact

Supporting Disadvantaged Students: Assumption Pathway Academy

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Assumption Student

The Collective for a Stronger Society aims to uplift, enable and empower lower-income families, and one area of focus is education. Assumption Pathway School (APS) offers an alternative route for students who face barriers to completing mainstream secondary school education. As a specialised school, APS offers vocational programmes accredited by ITE, and foundation and character development programmes developed in collaboration with MOE.

Ms Gan Hui Xin’s life took a turn when she enrolled at Assumption Pathway School (APS) in 2016. Her earlier academic performance had been poor, which led to a waning interest in her studies. During her four-year tenure at APS, however, she discovered a new passion and attained an ITE Skills Certificate (ISC) in Hairdressing. Although unable to continue her education at ITE, she remained determined to continue her pursuit of knowledge.

Transitioning to a two-year work-study programme at Assumption Pathway Academy (APA), Hui Xin embraced the opportunity to learn while earning. At age 17, she switched gears, enrolling in a Culinary Skills course. Starting as a Kitchen Assistant at APS’s in-house restaurant, The ART, she embarked on a journey of hands-on learning, balancing three days of on-the-job training with two days of classroom theory.

Hui Xin’s cheerful demeanor and pleasant personality quickly earned her recognition. Within a year, she moved from Kitchen Assistant to Service Crew and even started coaching new students. With newfound skills and confidence, she took on training attachments at The ACT café and ST Engineering office, showcasing her aptitude for independent work and warm customer service.

After she expressed a desire to further her studies, Hui Xin’s Job Coach guided her toward the ITE Nitec traineeship programme where she was able to secure sponsorship from Holiday Inn Singapore Atrium.

Hui Xin is now an employee at the hotel and continues to excel, garnering praise from her managers.

APA is one of the programmes under The Collective for A Stronger Society. To find out how you can participate, fill in the pledge form and indicate your area of interest.

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Events

Partnership with the Asia Philanthropy Circle: The pitch for social inclusivity

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A diverse group of individuals gathered around tables in a well-lit room, engaged in conversation and collaboration.

By Genevieve Ding of APC

On 10 January 2019, the Asia Philanthropy Circle (APC) convened a Singapore roundtable on the topic of ‘Inequality’. This time, to spur dialogue to action, APC, in partnership with the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS), selected three intervention initiatives which aim to promote social inclusivity in Singapore, and organised a pitch session to invite member partnership and funding of these projects.

Members were presented with a proposed primary research to establish living income benchmark, an integrated programme supporting disadvantaged children and a collective impact model that addresses youth unemployment.

This event is a follow-up from a roundtable in 2018 exploring the state of inequality in Singapore, with Assoc. Prof Teo You Yenn from Nanyang Technological University, discussing the lessons from her bestselling book, ‘This is what Inequality Looks Like’. In the book, Assoc. Prof Teo eloquently gives voice to the realities of unequal life circumstances in Singapore. To further unveil the lived realities of Singaporeans at all levels of society, Assoc. Prof Teo, together with Asst. Prof Ng Kok Hoe from the National University of Singapore, presented their proposed study on the budgets that different types of household need for a basic standard of living in Singapore. Their study would inform a benchmark of how much people need in order to live adequately, which could guide the planning of welfare schemes in Singapore.

On the topic of inclusive education, Ms Ng Kar Yee from the People’s Association and Ms Wu Meiling from SHINE Children and Youth Services presented their holistic education model for children from disadvantaged families. In Singapore, education has high aspirations as a social leveller but stumbles in the face of an uneven playing field. The presenters highlight the lack of collaborative approach from organisations to provide holistic, integrated care for primary school children. The Integrated Care Programme that they have been running aims to create a child-centric ecosystem of care for at-risk children.

The pitch session ended with the presentation of a collective impact initiative – the Singapore Youth Impact Collective – to improve the work-readiness of disadvantaged young people through skills development and vocational training. Representing CFS, which has taken on the project as the backbone organisation, Ms Joyce Teo shared that youths at-risk make up approximately 17% of the total population in Singapore. Significantly, those in the low income brackets have the least educational pathways, and young people from disadvantaged socioeconomic backgrounds find it very challenging to find employment with promises of job stability and upward career progression.

In his concluding remarks, Mr Laurence Lien, APC CEO and CFS Chairman shared the sentiment behind hosting the pitch session at the Community Foundation of Singapore. The vision of CFS is for the community to take initiative and lead efficacious ground-up interventions. Mr Lien emphasised that a community of supporters sends a much stronger message for social intervention. He explained that while the exit strategy of most initiatives is for the government to adopt large-scale intervention, there is a need for philanthropists to first try new, innovative models and blaze paths not ventured by the government. Philanthropy needs to explore and show new ways of doing things.

Members who are interested to know more are encouraged to either approach the organisations directly or contact APC to coordinate further follow up: membership@asiaphilanthropycircle.org

This article was originally published on Asia Philanthropy Circle’s newsletter at: http://www.asiaphilanthropycircle.org/singapore-roundtable-the-pitch-for-social-inclusivity/

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The competition was organised by City Harvest Community Services Association and received support from FUN! Fund, a Community Impact Fund jointly established by the Community Foundation of Singapore and the Agency for Integrated Care, with the aim of addressing social isolation among the elderly.

Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of National Development Mr Tan Kiat How attended the event. He encouraged the elderly to stay physically and mentally well, as well as urging them to participate in community activities and enjoy their golden years together.

Learn more about FUN! Fund at https://www.cf.org.sg/fun-fund/.

 

The programme provides the children with a non-threatening platform to connect with peers and have positive conversations. In addition, it exposes them to different people who can assist to broaden their perspectives.

L.S., a volunteer with the Reading Odyssey programme @ Spooner Road

中心“常胜将军”胡锦盛:比赛限时反应要快

现年92岁的胡锦盛是最年长的参赛者。自2017年退休后,他几乎每天都到活跃乐龄中心报到,从此爱上了玩拉密,每次可玩上三个小时,在中心是“常胜将军”。

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News

新保集团推出300万元基金 助医疗行政人员职业发展

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新保集团和ACE团队基金会启动一项300万元的基金,促进 新保集团医疗行政人员的职业发 展,除了培养专业技能,也让他 们有机会到海外进行交流和学术研讨。 

这项医疗行政人员发展基金(Healthcare Administrators Fund)是首次针对新保集团医疗行政人员而设的基金,由新保集团和ACE团队基金会(ACE Team Foundation)分别贡献150万元。 

新保集团旗下约有4600名医疗行政人员,占员工总数的15%。他们负责支持医疗保健系 统的日常运作和行政框架,包括研究、运营、财务、人力资源、教育和通讯等多个领域。 

符合条件的医疗行政人员将由上司提名,并接受评估。成功获得提名者可以申请培训基金。医疗行政人员可以通过教育与培训提升自己,也可以到海外跟其他国家的行政人员进行学术交流,然后把所学的带回新加坡。 

2023年新加坡医疗管理大会在星期三(8月16日)举办,社会及家庭发展部长兼卫生部第二部长马善高致辞时指出,在医疗保健管理方面采取更有效、更创新的战略是必须的,为确保医疗保健系统的可持续发展,新加坡必须发展医疗服务和管理模式。他说,医疗保健管理并不局限于机构的四面围墙内,必须跨学科合作,包括医疗行政人员与其他伙伴的广泛合作。 

在新保集团公共联系部门服务的高级执行员曾芳琳(30岁)说,作为一名年轻的医疗行政人员,她对新启动的医疗行政人员发展基金感到兴奋。有了这项基金,她就可以寻找机会学习新技能、增加见识包括加深了解不断发展的医疗保健管理领域。 

44岁的新保集团营运部门副主任林志忠也在受访时说:“医疗保健系统内的业务要求是高度专业的,必须提升医疗行政人员的职业发展,让大家有可持续的就业技能,也为塑造医疗保健领域带来重要的作用。”

另一方面,ACE团队基金会也会额外拨款150万元给新保集团所属的职场乐趣提升措施(Joy at Work initiatives),以支持医疗工作人员维持身心健康。 

ACE团队基金会由本地科技公司Grab的联合创办人兼总裁陈炳耀与太太童维创立,从2021年创立至今捐助不少医疗组织,如 广惠肇留医院、儿童癌症基金会和全国肾脏基金会等。

信用:联合早报©新报业媒体有限公司。复制需要许可

This article was originally published in Zaobao here. Source: Zaobao © SPH Media Limited. Permission required for reproduction.

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Stories Of Impact

Healing and hope for migrant workers

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Our decade-long partnership with HealthServe has helped Singapore’s only medical charity for migrant workers bring healthcare, mental health support and social assistance to this underserved community. CFS is commemorating 15 years of giving and this story is one of a three-part series that highlights the strong relationships CFS has fostered with charities over the years. 

They have helped me with everything. If I ever had a problem at the hospital, with my company or dormitory, they would step in. Here, I don’t have family. But HealthServe has helped me like family.

Like many migrant workers, Shah* came to Singapore to provide a better life for his family in Bangladesh. But soon after he arrived, he was struck with inflammatory bowel disease, causing gastric issues, skin problems and chest pain. All this came on top of the devastating diagnosis of his father’s cancer and his wife’s stomach ulcers. 

Shah was under immense pressure to take on loans to pay for multiple mounting medical bills in excess of $16,000. The financial and emotional stress caused his health to worsen. He is not alone in facing unexpected hardships while trying to provide for family back home. Close to one million low-wage foreign workers reside in Singapore. Access to affordable healthcare is limited for many of them and none were prepared, mentally or physically, for the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Joining forces to help an underserved community

Thousands of migrant workers were quarantined in cruise ships, hotels and dormitories when Covid-19 hit Singapore’s shores. Many struggled mentally, feeling helpless. Others needed medical care. These hardships became the catalyst for the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS) to join hands with our long-time charity partner, HealthServe, and help this underserved community. CFS decided to pool donations into a Collective Impact Fund called the Sayang Sayang Fund. With a grant from this fund and other funders, HealthServe was able to deliver much-needed medical attention, mental health support and social assistance to approximately 7,500 workers. For these foreign workers on the margins of society, HealthServe offered healing and hope.

Alongside these grants, CFS supported HealthServe with grants from the KrisFam Fund and the Kampong Spirit Fund. The KrisFam Fund grant enabled HealthServe to treat workers with serious chronic health conditions and extend financial aid to those in need while the Kampong Spirit Fund grant allowed the charity to provide the migrant community with meals and groceries amid the on-off pandemic lockdowns in 2021. For beneficiaries whose illness or injuries made it impossible for them to work, the much-needed help and donations came as a huge relief. In all, HealthServe made about 470 visits to foreign worker dormitories across Singapore.

The continuation of a long and rewarding partnership 

HealthServe started as a small clinic providing medical and dental services to the vulnerable migrant-worker community in 2006. Today, HealthServe offers a range of expanded services comprising mental health programmes and counselling, casework support for injuries and salary-related issues, and other forms of social assistance, much of it supported by grants and donations facilitated by CFS.  Our partnership with this unique charity goes back to 2013.

Over the past 16 years, HealthServe has remained mission-focused in serving low-wage migrant workers who fall through the cracks, even as we tackle constant challenges and headwinds such as post-pandemic dips in both donations and volunteers. Only with your continued trust and support can we do more. We look forward to actively leading every migrant worker in need towards a life of health, well-being, and dignity, with you.

Dr Benjamin Kuan, CEO, HealthServe Ltd

HealthServe’s commitment to migrant workers’ holistic health, well-being and dignity aligns with our focus on promoting mental well-being and healthcare to marginalised communities.

“CFS has helped educate donors and stakeholders about the plight of this very underserved segment of society. As a result, HealthServe’s mission is more well understood,” says Dr Benjamin Kuan, CEO of HealthServe. “The partnership between HealthServe and CFS has grown, with CFS shifting its vision to long-term outcomes, aligning with HealthServe’s goal of preventive care, which is also in line with the nation’s Healthier SG strategy.” 

Philanthropic support is critical

Largely volunteer run, HealthServe operates with a small staff team and hundreds of medical and non-medical volunteers and interns. Fundraising can be a challenge, especially now that reduced charitable dollars tend to go towards causes supporting Singapore citizens post-pandemic. Philanthropic support from CFS donors therefore remains crucial. 

“Over the years, CFS has demonstrated its ability to form strategic partnerships to deliver funds to the community in the fastest and most effective way and HealthServe is confident that our partnership with CFS will remain relevant in serving the underserved segments in society,” says Dr Kuan.

We are proud to maintain a long-term partnership with HealthServe and are committed to working with other like-minded charities to bring greater support to Mental Well-being as a cause and to create greater impact for the underserved communities.

CFS is celebrating our anniversary throughout 2023—15 years of empowering donors to make a meaningful impact. Since our inception in 2008, we have received over S$292 million in donations in Singapore and disbursed over S$157 million in grants to over 400 charity partners.  

To discover how you can make a difference, please visit www.cf.org.sg/contact-us/get-in-touch/ 

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News

S’poreans donated $90m in first five months of 2020, equal to whole of last year’s donations

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Many pedestrians walking on a bustling city street, surrounded by tall buildings and bustling activity.

SINGAPORE – Singaporeans have stepped up to help those in need and those most affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

From January to May this year, $90 million was donated to the Community Chest, the Community Foundation of Singapore’s Sayang Sayang Fund which was set up in February, and through online donation platform Giving.sg.

This amount was about equal to the overall donations received by the Community Chest and Giving.sg throughout the entire 2019, said the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth and Ministry of Social and Family Development in a joint statement on Monday (June 22).

The ministries added that more than 13,300 people signed up to volunteer through Giving.sg during the first five months of 2020, compared to 11,300 in the same period last year.

This was despite a decrease in volunteering opportunities during the circuit breaker period.

Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Grace Fu said that the pandemic had not dampened the spirit of caring among people here but instead brought out the best in Singaporeans and showed that many in the community care about the country deeply.

“Let us to continue to grow this spirit of Singapore Together and partner one another to overcome our challenges. By doing so, we will make it through this difficult period and emerge as a stronger society,” said Ms Fu.

Of the $90 million, $42.2 million was donated to the Community Chest, of which 40 per cent went to Covid-19-related causes.

Donations also came from companies such as security and aerospace firm Lockheed Martin.

The company donated more than $280,000 from its Job Support Scheme payments to The Courage Fund and The Invictus Fund, both of which are managed by the Community Chest.

During the same period last year, the Community Chest collected $22.9 million in donations.

Under the Sayang Sayang Fund, more than 4,500 donors – individuals, multinational corporations and small and medium-sized enterprises – contributed $7.6 million from February to May.

These include pro-wrestling fitness school Grapple Max, which raised $6,000 during an online fundraiser while showing a wrestling match, and home-based skincare start-up Soul Good Project that donated a month’s worth of profits.

“These smaller but equally valuable contributions to the Sayang Sayang Fund reflect the charitable nature of many Singaporeans who are still willing to donate, even in times of adversity,” said the ministries.

The donations to the Sayang Sayang Fund have funded over 330 projects that help individuals, families and seniors from marginalised backgrounds who have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Giving.sg portal received $40.7 million from January to May, with $20.4 million donated in April, after the first tranche of $600 Solidarity Payments was given out.

The bulk of donors contributed to causes related to Covid-19, such as to help migrant workers and healthcare staff.

The ministries noted that while donations to Covid-19-related causes increased during this period, causes not directly related to the coronavirus experienced a decline in donations.

They added that the Community Chest projected a 20 to 30 per cent drop in donations in 2020 for its funded programmes.

To aid these charities, the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre has launched the City of Good Show, an online game show fundraiser.

Episodes will air every Wednesday at 8pm on the centre’s Facebook page from this week on.

Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee said that he was encouraged that the community spirit is strong and Singaporeans from all walks of life have pitched in to help fight against the coronavirus.

He added though that it was imperative to focus on community needs that go beyond the Covid-19-related causes.

“Our social service agencies need our sustained support so that they can continue to deliver critical services, as well as meet growing and more complex needs in our society,” said Mr Lee.

“With everyone lending a helping hand and looking out for one another, Singapore will emerge stronger from Covid-19.”

Source: The Straits Time

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The competition was organised by City Harvest Community Services Association and received support from FUN! Fund, a Community Impact Fund jointly established by the Community Foundation of Singapore and the Agency for Integrated Care, with the aim of addressing social isolation among the elderly.

Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of National Development Mr Tan Kiat How attended the event. He encouraged the elderly to stay physically and mentally well, as well as urging them to participate in community activities and enjoy their golden years together.

Learn more about FUN! Fund at https://www.cf.org.sg/fun-fund/.

 

The programme provides the children with a non-threatening platform to connect with peers and have positive conversations. In addition, it exposes them to different people who can assist to broaden their perspectives.

L.S., a volunteer with the Reading Odyssey programme @ Spooner Road

中心“常胜将军”胡锦盛:比赛限时反应要快

现年92岁的胡锦盛是最年长的参赛者。自2017年退休后,他几乎每天都到活跃乐龄中心报到,从此爱上了玩拉密,每次可玩上三个小时,在中心是“常胜将军”。

Picture of admin bluecube
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Lorem Ipsum is simply dummy text of the printing and typesetting industry. Lorem Ipsum has been the industry's standard dummy text ever since the 1500s, when an unknown printer took a galley of type and scrambled it to make a type specimen book.

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