Extracted from Annual Report FY 2020/2021

Rising Above Circumstances

FRCS FSC takes on challenges with determination and creativity, so that we may encourage others to look beyond problems and rise above their circumstances. Hence, we have grown stronger, both in capacity and capability, despite disruptions from the COVID-19 crisis.

Journeying alongside individuals and families in need; we hold out hope for them, inspiring them to draw on their inner strengths, empowering them for the path ahead.

Working with Bukit Timah, Clementi, Ulu Pandan, and West Coast grassroots organizations in late 2020, we created attractive and easy-to-understand infographics for posters displayed digitally and in print at lift lobbies of HDB blocks, so that residents could be more aware of where to seek support in such unprecedented times.

At our main office in Clementi, we started SobeRISE, a community-based alcohol addictions management programme in January 2021. Taking two years to develop, SobeRISE is an initiative with the National Addictions Management Service. Since 1 April 2021, FRCS has been appointed by the SG Cares Office of Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth to operate SG Cares Volunteer Centre @ Clementi to attend to volunteerism initiatives and growing partnerships with stakeholders to meet community needs within Clementi town. The FSC is overseeing the Volunteer Centre operations.

Staff at our West Coast branch undertook a four-month community needs assessment exercise, once safe distancing measures eased in late 2020. Renovations for the FRCS Eldercare and Caregivers Centre (FRCS ECC) at Bukit Gombak commenced in January 2021 after delays due to the COVID-19 situation. We hope to open in the second half of 2021. The FSC played an instrumental role in helping to shape services for FRCS ECC by embarking on a community needs assessment survey in the immediate vicinity of the proposed site in mid-2019.

As a social service agency of over two decades, FRCS FSC is forging an even more distinct identity, establishing greater credibility. We are deeply encouraged by our increasing reach and visibility, made possible by the growing trust of the government and our partner organizations.

Paving the Way Forward

While it was impossible to foresee a pandemic in the years prior, FRCS FSC was already putting in place vital software, hardware and systems that paved the way forward for it to take on challenges ahead.

In FY 2017/2018, we were gearing up for growth. As part of our expansion, we planned our services carefully and kept an even pace in our development. Adopting such a strategy prevented us from being derailed in our mission to help people when the pandemic came about.

In FY 2018/2019, we went about shaping our spaces and powering up our practices by renovating the Centre and transforming the way we worked. Armed with laptops, our staff started hotdesking in an open concept office. Furnished with an upgraded Information Technology system offering secure remote access, they became less office-bound than ever before. These choices made it possible for them to carry on with their tasks with minimal disruption when work-from-home eventually became essential.

FY 2019/2020 saw us pulling together as a team to carry on programmes and services in more innovative ways. The circuit breaker called for us to connect with clients mostly online, for face-to-face meetings were restricted. Moving into FY 2020/2021, we met with clients and conducted Group Work programmes either in-person or online, depending on the government advisories of the day.

We appreciate our volunteers for helping in various programmes and adapting with us according to these advisories. Our Management Committee is thankful for the dedicated staff who press on in continuing to meet the needs of our clients and partners, upgrading their skills, and fostering a team spirit across different locations. They have our unwavering support.

We want to thank the Ministry of Social and Family Development, National Council of Social Service, SG Cares Office, National Addictions Management Service, community grassroots organizations, Foundation of Rotary Clubs (Singapore) Ltd, and Rotary Clubs, for their steadfast support as we stand by our clients, spurring them to strengthen their hopes, discover their potential, and explore possibilities.

Yeo Chuen Eng
Foundation of Rotary Clubs Singapore Family Service Centre Management Committee