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The Straits Times – Fund marks 20 years of marriage for couple
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The Straits Times – Fund marks 20 years of marriage for couple

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Ms Trina Liang-Lin on a couch posing for a photo

About six months before Ms Trina Liang-Lin’s 20th wedding anniversary on June 2016, she mulled over how to make the occasion meaningful.

“My husband and I did not want just another party,” said Ms Liang-Lin, 47, managing director of investment research consulting firm Templebridge Investments.

She is married to Mr Ed Lin, 49, partner and director of the Singapore office of Bain & Company, a global management consultancy.

The couple have no children.

“We wanted to do something meaningful that can last beyond a party,” she added.

Her friend Laurence Lien, chairman of the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS), suggested she organise regular donations to charity under a common fund, which the foundation could help to run. “We liked the idea. It saves us the work and resources needed to set up a private foundation,” she said.

In early 2016, the Lin Foundation was set up under the umbrella of the CFS with a six-figure sum, she said.

The fund has given money to the Singapore Committee for UN Women, a non-profit organisation that promotes women’s empowerment and gender equality, of which Ms Liang-Lin is the president.

The committee supports the work of UN Women, the United Nations body that promotes gender equality and fights discrimination against women. The fund has also given money to the Singapore Management University, the Singapore Repertory Theatre and the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

These were causes that she picked when the fund was set up.

On more younger, wealthy people like her setting up charity funds, Ms Liang-Lin said: “Increasingly, people are realising that they don’t have to wait till they are older or richer to give back and make an impact.”
Read more.

Photo: The Straits Times

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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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Stories Of Impact

#MyGivingJourney X Ivy Tse: Going the distance for youths 

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In our #MyGivingJourney series, CFS features extraordinary women in Singapore and their efforts in philanthropy. This story features Ivy Tse, CEO at Halogen Foundation Singapore.  

At 35, Ivy Tse must be one of the youngest CEOs around. But the unassuming head of Halogen Foundation Singapore quips that she is more a “Chief Everything Officer”. In a day, her job can take her from fundraising to building partnerships to staff development – or even tackling a problem with the office printer.  

A relatively small charity, Halogen runs on a team of about 21. Its mission is to transform the lives of disadvantaged young people through leadership, mentorship and entrepreneurship programmes. Ivy joined in 2012, when the team was about half its current size. And coming from global giant Procter & Gamble, she found she had to be a Jack of all trades in her new role organizing events at Halogen.  

“You have to be very resourceful. If there is an obstacle, you find a solution,” she says. “It was humbling.” People also questioned her decision to ditch a lucrative career path at P&G. “They said, it’s so hard to get in, why would you leave?” she recalls. Plus, there was the financial aspect: moving to the nonprofit sector meant taking a pay cut of a third.  

But the go-getter, who also describes herself as an idealist, was going through what youths now call a ‘quarter-life crisis’. She decided she wanted to immerse herself in work that counted. And she figured, “If it doesn’t work out, I can crawl back to the corporate sector and run twice as fast to make up for it!”  

Ten years on, the dynamic Ivy, who runs marathons in her spare time, shows no signs of slowing down. Nor any regrets building a career empowering young people. Seeing how Halogen’s dedicated volunteers and partners help shy, apprehensive teenagers gain access to the social capital and soft skills needed to thrive in a fast-evolving world has brought her a lot of gratification. The Foundation has created more resilient youngsters, reduced school dropout rates and developed leaders who have gone on to make a positive impact in their communities. 

Giving back has been a part of Ivy’s life since her school days. She chose CCAs that revolved around volunteer work such as Habitat for Humanity and Rotaract Club, while studying for a double degree in mechanical engineering and business at the National University of Singapore. She enjoyed hands-on volunteering but she also thrived on the organizational aspect of nonprofit work. And, she liked motivating people to participate in charitable causes and seeing them grow through that experience.  

“That’s what I get to do now at Halogen,” Ivy notes. Her job also sees her working with the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS) which helps donors and grant makers understand what nonprofits like Halogen do and matches them. For example, CFS linked up UBS with Halogen and the financial institution has helped fund Halogen’s Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship programme. 

Ultimately, what Ivy is most proud of is growing and building a team that is really passionate about youth development. Her advice for young people who are mulling a career in social services? “It can really challenge you. It’s almost like being an entrepreneur,” she says. “And it is rewarding in so many ways.” 

Begin your own journey of giving with CFS. Read other inspiring stories of #MyGivingJourney series here. 

This article was written by Sunita Sue Leng, a former financial analyst and journalist, who believes that the written word can be a force for good. She hopes to someday write something worth plagiarising. 

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Tertiary-educated adults with autism receive training for jobs in engineering sector

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A woman diligently operating a computer amidst the bustling environment of a factory, focused on her tasks.

Tertiary-educated adults with autism are being trained and placed in jobs in the engineering sector under a new programme by research and technology non-profit organisation Trampolene.

The Gates (Growing Autistic Talent for Engineering Sector) programme was started in May 2022, after research showed that people with autism have one of the lowest employment rates among people with disabilities.

Those with tertiary qualifications also face underemployment owing to a high entry barrier for higher-skilled jobs, said Trampolene chief operating officer Cheok Xue Ting.

Ms You Kai Xuan is among 42 graduates of institutes of higher learning enrolled in the programme. She was unable to secure internships as part of her studies at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) as companies told the school she was unsuitable.

The 22-year-old, who has a Nitec in infocomm technology, is working full-time as an assembly technician at precision manufacturing company Grand Venture Technology (GVT).

Young adults with autism lack executive function skills, such as planning and time estimation.

Ms Hillary Lim, who works for Trampolene as a senior job coach, helped create a timetable for Ms You. It details specific duties she must undertake. For example, it says Ms You has to test iron bars for 90 minutes from 8.30am, and “pack silver things in plastic bags and paste stickers on the bags” between 10.15am and 11.40am.

Ms Lim also held Ms You’s hand during the coaching to show her how much strength was needed when using a torque screwdriver.

Ms You needs the timetable to pace herself and manage her time. When she started working in 2022, she tired herself out before lunch as she exerted too much strength on simple tasks.

“At first, I was nervous as I was new to the environment. But I am comfortable with the supervisor and colleagues now. They guided me patiently on the tasks, and were caring and willing to help.”

The Gates programme is the first to be supported by Temasek Foundation under a pay-for-success model.

The $340,000 committed by upfront funders will be repaid if trainees stay in a job for nine months and other outcomes of job training and placement are achieved.

In this funding model, foundations, financial institutions and corporations provide upfront capital to organisations like Trampolene to serve their beneficiaries.

Outcome funders such as the Government repay upfront funders only if the project achieves outcome targets.

Ms Cheok said the pay-for-success model focuses on retention rate, an issue among young adults with autism, who tend to leave their jobs after six months.

Before the job placement, Trampolene assessed Ms You and found her suitable for hands-on work.

Ms Lim also briefed Ms You’s colleagues on how she communicates, telling them that they need to repeat or simplify instructions.

She told them they can also break down the work into small steps and share her responsibilities.

GVT chief executive Julian Ng said one of the main challenges the company encountered was communication. Some staff with autism take what others say literally and have trouble understanding abstract concepts.

For example, Ms You’s colleagues will say “I’ll get back to you by a specific time” rather than “I’ll get back to you later”.

“This improves communication for everyone in the workplace,” said Mr Ng. The company has about 150 employees at its Singapore headquarters, including three with special needs.

Trampolene also works with organisations to redesign the recruitment process and job role. With GVT, it advised the company to use work assessment instead of conventional interviews.

To match trainees with employers, Trampolene conducts tests for specific skills employers are looking for, from motor skills to data entry and quality control.

It then selects trainees able to perform the tasks, said Ms Cheok.

She said Trampolene also considers work planning, hygiene and safety awareness, and sensory challenges.

If a trainee is affected by high-frequency noises even with earplugs on, for example, he might be more suited to an office job than engineering.

Trampolene is aiming to train 70 young adults over 30 months from May 2022.

To date, it has trained 42 graduates with autism and placed 18 of them in jobs, with 13 having stayed with their employers for three months or more.

Aside from Temasek Foundation, some of the other upfront funders are Ishk Tolaram Foundation, Quantedge Foundation and Asia Philanthropic Ventures.

Outcome funders include ECCA Family Foundation and the Diana Koh Foundation through the Community Foundation of Singapore.

Mr Nicholas Tay, who has autism and holds a diploma in pharmaceutical science from Temasek Polytechnic, was hired under the programme as a production worker in ice-cream manufacturing company The Ice Cream & Cookie Co.

He sets up workstations for production, prepares packaging and places products on a conveyor system for printing or metal detection testing.Mr Damian Yip, head of production at the company, said he considered Mr Tay’s basic communication skills, education level and challenges faced at previous workplaces to decide if he was suitable for the role.

Ms Lim said Mr Tay’s main issues are perspective-taking and negative thinking. For example, when the 26-year-old began doing this job, he often felt lousy about himself when he saw others working faster than him.

“A regular person would think, ‘Oh, the person is faster than me because he has been here for a longer time than me, so he is more experienced,’” said Ms Lim.

“However, Nicholas’ thinking was: ‘Oh, that person is faster than me. I have to be as fast, if not I am not good enough to work here.’”

She said Mr Tay’s co-workers often look out for him when he shows signs that he is tired or when work is too difficult for him. They then get him to switch duties, to take the load off him.

But Mr Tay initially thought they moved him because he was not doing a good job.

Ms Lim mapped out Mr Tay’s thoughts and shared with him other possibilities – for instance, that co-workers may move him to other duties because they care about him.

“It helps to widen Nicholas’ perspectives and also lets him try to think in different ways,” she said.

To learn more about the causes CFS supports, please click here.

Source: The Straits Times © SPH Media Limited. Permission required for reproduction

I have always been interested in supporting elder care. But there are many charities doing such work that I do not know of. Through CFS, I learnt about Yong-en Care Centre and having seen first-hand what they are doing, I feel that my money is being well-utilised.

For Yong-en Care Centre, meeting donors face-to-face was a valuable opportunity to deepen their understanding of its unique care model and to engage with them on any questions they may have, says Griselda. In addition, it is also an opportunity to thank CFS donors who have been supporting the charity and build a lasting relationship with them.

CFS assists charities and their underprivileged communities by connecting them with donors who are seeking to support causes and crucial needs that resonate with them deeply.


To find out more about the causes we support, please visit 
www.cf.org.sg/what-we-support/.

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Posts of the late former Law Society President Adrian Tan has been published as a book
律师公会已故前会长陈锦海 曾发表贴文已结集成书

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LinkedIn posts by the late Mr Adrian Tan have recently been compiled and published as a book, titled “If I were King of Singapore”. 

All proceeds from the book will go to the Adrian Tan Memorial Fund, which is set up by Mrs Adrian Tan and managed by the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS). 

This fund focuses on two primary causes that are close to Adrian’s heart: ensuring marginalised communities have access to legal services through Pro Bono SG and advocating the welfare of migrant workers.

Learn how CFS can support you in making an impact towards the causes that you care about: https://cf.org.sg/donors/how-we-assist-donors/.

Book by Adrian Tan, with the title 'If I were King of Singapore'
新加坡律师公会已故前会长陈锦海的妻子,把他的LinkedIn贴文结合成书出版。《如果我是新加坡国王》所有收益将投入去年以他名义设立的“陈锦海纪念基金”。(叶振忠摄)

LinkedIn posts by the late Mr Adrian Tan have recently been compiled and published as a book, titled “If I were King of Singapore”. 

All proceeds from the book will go to the Adrian Tan Memorial Fund, which is set up by Mrs Adrian Tan and managed by the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS). 

This fund focuses on two primary causes that are close to Adrian’s heart: ensuring marginalised communities have access to legal services through Pro Bono SG and advocating the welfare of migrant workers.

Learn how CFS can support you in making an impact towards the causes that you care about: https://cf.org.sg/donors/how-we-assist-donors/.

2023年因病过世的新加坡律师公会前会长陈锦海律师,生前在LinkedIn发表的“如果我是新加坡国王”系列贴文已经结集成书,收入全数投入去年以他名义设立的“陈锦海纪念基金”。

陈锦海生前是义正律师事务所(TSMP Law Corporation)的合伙人,遗孀去年通过新加坡社区基金会(The Community Foundation of Singapore),设立纪念基金。

《联合早报》通过义正律所联合管理合伙人张祉盈律师,电邮访问陈锦海的妻子。

不愿具名的陈太太说,纪念基金旨在支持陈锦海撰写文章和社媒贴文常提起值得支持的慈善项目,“继续他的工作和精神遗产是有意义的”。

陈太太不愿透露纪念基金的金额,但根据新加坡社区基金会网站资料,设立基金的门槛为20万元。

基金的指定受益人都是陈锦海生前热衷的慈善项目,包括新加坡法律义务办事处(Pro Bono SG)和客工援助组织“康侍”(Healthserve)。

陈太太说,陈锦海在担任律师公会会长期间,强烈觉得新加坡法律义务办事处援助无力承担法律服务者的工作做得出色,所以基金将给予支持。为客工提供心理健康咨询,也将是基金的支持项目。

在法律界30多年的陈锦海,2022年1月起担任律师公会会长,上任两个月后不幸患癌,去年7月8日与世长辞,得年57岁。

 

撰写《纯爱手册》畅销书 自给自足完成大学教育


1988年,陈锦海在新加坡国立大学法学院念大一时,先后撰写刻画本地初级学院学生生活的《纯爱手册》上下集——“The Teenage Textbook”和“The Teenage Workbook”。

两本书成为畅销书,曾登上舞台剧、拍成电影和电视剧,而他也靠两本书的收入自给自足,完成大学教育。

陈太太说,尽管出身卑微,陈锦海对自己有机会追求法律职业向来很感恩。为了纪念他这份感激之情,她将另设“陈锦海助学金”协助国大的贫困法学生。

陈锦海敢怒敢言,在去世前的三年多,他在社媒积极发表法律相关贴文,旨在提高公众的法律知识。

因笔调活泼,涵盖法律变革、无偿服务和客工课题等的内容生动易读,赢得好评,LinkedIn的追踪者达3万8000个。

陈锦海曾说自己有时要评论新加坡政府的政策,却不想说“如果我是政府”,所以选择以“如果我是新加坡国王”的诙谐方式表达,“因为我们知道,这里暂时还没有国王”。

陈太太说,陈锦海一直想再出书,却被病症阻碍,“他不会想到,自己在LinkedIn发表的系列贴文会取得巨大成功,最终结集成书”。

“他去世后,公众和认识他的人都深切悲痛,许多人,甚至是通过LinkedIn认识他的人,都表示会想念他和他的作品。”

 

新书让陈锦海的声音永存

 

陈太太透露,很多人要求保留陈锦海的LinkedIn账户,以便继续阅读他生前的想法。

“这本书就这样出版了。对许多被他感动的人来说,这是让他的声音继续存在的一种方式。”

《如果我是新加坡国王》已在纪伊国屋书店(Kinokuniya)、大众书局、Book Bar和WHSmith樟宜分店出售。

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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The CDA top-up programme: Giving support to pre-school children from low-income families

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A diverse group of children and adults, all wearing masks, gather together in a united display of safety and responsibility.

Pre-schools are especially essential in providing a solid foundation for children to get an education, and to also build confidence and impart social skills, which will stay with them for life. As such, The Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS) is partnering with EtonHouse Community Fund (ECF) and the Ministry of Education (MOE) on a Child Development Account (CDA) top-up programme which will benefit around 1,300 pre-schoolers from low-income families this year.

This programme is facilitated by the inter-agency taskforce Uplifting Pupils in Life and Inspiring Families (UPLIFT) to provide eligible pre-schoolers with $500 this year and up to a cap of $1,500 over the next three years, with the government providing dollar-for-dollar matching contributions for the top-ups.

To qualify, the children must be enrolled in 57 pre-schools under seven selected operators, and their families must have a gross household income of $4,500 or less. CFS and ECF will be contributing a total of $1 million to the CDA top-up programme over the next three years.

The seven operators are: E-Bridge Pre-School, Iyad Perdaus Child Development, Kidz Meadow Childcare and Development Centre, PPIS Child Development Centre, Presbyterian Community Services, Super Talent Childcare and YWCA Child Development Centre.

Along with Second Minister for Education Dr Maliki Osman, CFS CEO Catherine Loh paid a visit to partner operator E-Bridge Pre-School’s Punggol Large Childcare Centre on 8 October 2020 to mark the launch of the programme and to celebrate Children’s Day.

“We have a responsibility to strengthen our social safety nets to ensure no child gets left behind. This is why this collaboration is such a wonderful opportunity for CFS and our donors to uplift children from low-income families,” says Catherine.

“I hope that this CDA top-up programme can encourage more low-income families to enrol their children into pre-schools. I also hope that it can provide additional support to needy families during this difficult period by defraying child-raising expenses,’’ says Dr Maliki Osman.

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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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