I joined the Temasek Overseas Outreach Programme in December 2008. With some 20 schoolmates, I went to a Cambodian village named Sangke Croun Village. At the village, we provided manual labour in digging wells, building toilets and fencing the village school. We also taught the students there. We carried out fund-raising projects in Singapore to raise US$5000 for the school.
As we also believe that charity begins at home, we organized an event in collaboration with Singapore Children’s Society, for some less fortunate children here. The event was held at the Marina Barrage. We brought the children through the exhibition, had drawing competitions and interacted with them.
What struck me most from both projects, especially Cambodia, is how we can be happy with whatever we have. I observed how contented the villagers were with their simple life with 150 residents sharing only 2 wells and 5 toilets. Material wealth was definitely not top on their agenda. I also witnessed how the children from the Singapore Children’s Society looked out for one another and were so happy to have kind words and encouragement from us. I observed their zest for life, no matter their material circumstances.
Living such a fortunate and privileged life here, I now finally understand that you do not need material goods to be happy. The villagers and children from Singapore Children’s Society taught me instead that sharing and helping one another creates an abundance of joy that no amount of material wealth can buy.
If I chance upon any opportunity to give back to the community I will definitely not hesitate to accept it. I have learnt so much from these two community projects.
Both the Cambodian and Children’s Society projects gave me a chance to look after children. Being the youngest in my family, I did not experience taking care of younger siblings and had not developed any maternal instincts! After both projects, I have gained confidence in being with children. More...
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