Founder Paul Heng is a firm believer of “giving back to society”. He consciously allocates a portion of his time to humanitarian organizations. He is currently an active Rotarian and a fund-raiser/supporter of the Care Corner Orphanage in Chiangmai, Thailand. He recently took a back seat at “Make-A-Wish Foundation (Singapore) Ltd, having volunteered and serve on the board of directors for over a decade – his most recent role was that of Chairman of the Board.
Touching the elderly residents at the Singapore Christian Home (Feb 8 2014)
On Feb 8 2014 (Saturday), a group of 30 Rotary members, family members and Rotary Ambassadors visited the Singapore Christian Home at Sembawang. This Home has a rich history of nearly 50 years, and despite its name, has over 200 residents of different religious and racial backgrounds. They moved to their current site at Sembawang about three years ago (previously from Jalan Tan Tock Seng).
The residents are primarily Chinese, and female, aged between late 40’s and 104. There are about 50 male residents. Most of them move around on wheel chairs, either because of necessity or as a safety precaution. Some are bed-ridden and on liquid diets.
The 30 of us engaged with the majority of the residents, treating them to some simple snacks, biscuits, chocolates and ice-cream. We also played an enjoyable game of BINGO with about 40 of them.
This is our first, but not the only visit. We intend to continue our relationship with this Home, and are already making plans to visit them again on Mother’s Day 2014.
Many of the residents do not have regular visitors – though many of them still have families. Many, if not all of them are “…just waiting for the day …”. It is heart wrenching, and this is one of the key motivations for us to try and make that small difference. We would not be able to change their situation, but we wish to do what we can do.
To some extent, it was a successful project – defined as the residents having a happy time that afternoon (feedback from the Home), albeit a brief 2 hours, and many of the participants taking away lessons on what it may be like when we age. If I am allowed just one word to describe the project, it would have to be “meaningful”.
Building A Home in Cambodia
A past-president and a active Rotarian of the Rotary Club of Bugis Junction, Paul has initiated a number of meaningful community projects such as "Children in Need" and house-building in Cambodia (see picture). During his year of presidency in 2001 / 2002, Paul led a team of Rotarians and students from the Australian International School to Cambodia -and together, the team built three houses for the poorest of the poor in Cambodia. Looking back, Paul can say with certainty that it was really satisfying to be able to get down to bare hands and knees to put the nails in place. For the proud owners of the new houses, it was like a dream come true - made possible by Rotary.
Putting things in perspective, being able to give back to society is definitely a privilege and a blessing, and it all falls in very nicely with Paul's approach to his business of 'helping others'.