Engaging Minds, Transforming Lives S I N D A
A N N U A L
R E P O R T
2 0 1 4
Board of Trustees Patron Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong Chairman, Board of Trustees Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam
Advisors Dr Vivian Balakrishnan Mr S Iswaran Mr Hri Kumar Nair Mr Vikram Nair
Life Trustees Prof S Jayakumar Mr S Dhanabalan Mr S Chandra Das Mr J Y Pillay Mr Sat Pal Khattar Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam Mr K Shanmugam Dr N Varaprasad
President Ms Indranee Rajah
Term Trustees Mr Inderjit Singh Ms Indranee Rajah Mr M Rajaram Mr V Shankar Mr Ravi Menon Mr R Jayachandran Mr Girija Pande Mr Gautam Banerjee Mr Ravinder Singh Justice Judith Prakash Mr K Kesavapany Mr Hsieh Fu Hua (Till June 2014)
Treasurer Mr Shekaran Krishnan
Vice Presidents Mr Viswa Sadasivan Mr Shabbir Hassanbhai Secretary Mr Sarjit Singh
Members Mr V P Jothi Mr R Rajaram Mr Puvan Ariaratnam Mr P Thirunal Karasu Mr R Subramaniam Iyer Dr Joshua V M Kuma Mr Raj Mohamed Mr K V Rao Mr R Logapreyan
to meet the needs of a fast-paced and ever-changing landscape. Our programmes are increasing, and our help schemes assist almost every layer of the community. Our students, families and the Indian community as a whole, have made steady progress . SINDAâ€™s strategies will further evolve to counter social concerns, as the Indian community cannot risk falling behind. Our journey ahead may prove to be a challenge, but we will forge ahead - as a united Singaporean Indian community, working together, helping one another, engaging minds and transforming lives.
Head over to the URLs in this annual report to see more photos!
Vision To build a strong and vibrant Singaporean Indian community together
Mission To build a well-educated, resilient and confident community of Indians that stands together with the other communities in contributing to the progress of multi-racial Singapore
Values Respect, our culture Integrity, our foundation Service, our promise Excellence, our pursuit
Strategic Thrusts Education Maximising educational opportunities for all students Youth Inspiring youths towards greater achievements Family Engaging parents to play an active role in their childrenâ€™s lives Community Forging a stronger relationship with community partners
President’s Message Dear friends of SINDA, 2014 has been another eventful year for SINDA. Let me give you a snapshot of what we have been doing.
Our Programmes and Services SINDA has been busy rolling out programmes and enhanced initiatives to the different stakeholders in our Singaporean Indian community. Our wide-ranging programmes and services enrich students’ lives from pre-school to university, not only by complementing their education, but by also strongly supporting the holistic development of each student. Our students have overall performed well in school. We believe supportive home environments and integral positive parental roles were key to their good performance and we are confident that they will go on to become confident adults. Looking at the most recent national educational statistics from the Ministry of Education, we note that: 1. The number of Indian students moving on to postsecondary institutions from each cohort has risen steadily, from 85.1% in 2004 to 91.7% in 2013; 2. Overall passes at PSLE level stand at 96.4% for Indian students in 2013, a slight increase of 0.9% from 2004; 3. In GCE ‘O’ Level, 74.3% of our students achieved passes for at least 5 subjects in 2013, a 1% increase from 2004; 4. 89% of Indian students scored at least 3 ‘A’/’H2’ passes and a pass in General Paper/Knowledge Inquiry; a sizeable jump, from about 86.6% in 2004.
Although overall educational performance has improved, we must be mindful that other communities are doing better as well. We cannot afford to be complacent. We should continue to benchmark ourselves against the national average and close the gap. There is still a significant student population that continues to underperform and lag behind despite our improved overall performance. SINDA has increased its interventions towards such students, with both motivation and confidence building programmes aimed at equipping them with the necessary skill sets and impetus to improve at school. However achieving a real breakthrough in our community’s performance cannot be SINDA’s effort alone; it can only be done as a concerted effort of the whole Indian community. It involves a multi-pronged effort bringing together key stakeholders—parents, teachers and schools—to better reach and impact these students. This includes making affordable and quality tuition available to all students and infusing SINDA’s youth activities and motivational elements into our educational offerings. Our efforts with students are complemented by our family initiatives. SINDA is also targeting parents to make them key influencers and champions behind their children’s academic endeavours. Parental styles greatly impact children, and we aim to equip parents to better motivate and support their children with the right tools and skills through our workshops.
2014 also saw several new partnerships with community organisations and other companies wishing to make a difference in the community. The Indian Business-leaders’ Roundtable’s fundraiser raised over $300,000 towards funding e-learning and info communications technology initiatives for our students.
These changes were effected in the spirit of being a self-sustaining community that contributes towards its own growth and progress. These contributions will allow SINDA to do more.
The annual SINDA Excellence Awards recognises the outstanding achievements of our Indian students. Several Memoranda of Understanding with some $350,000 in pledges from organisations towards funding bursaries and tertiary grants for deserving pupils were also entered into.
On 1 July 2014, K Barathan succeeded T Raja Segar as SINDA’s Chief Executive Officer. In the short time that he has been here, Barathan has introduced new programmes and initiatives for the community and has strengthened SINDA’s internal processes. I am confident that the organisation will continue to grow from strength to strength with Barathan as CEO.
The Back To School Festival annual bursary event was attended by over 5,000 students and their families. This event was held at the Singapore Zoo for the first time and was made possible by the generosity of several corporate entities. These are just a few heartening examples of the fruit borne out of the many meaningful partnerships forged in 2014.
Increase to SINDA Fund Contribution Rates Revisions to the SINDA Fund contribution rates were also effected on 1 January 2015. The four original contribution bands were expanded to eight categories, taking into consideration SINDA’s expanded programmes in line with our SINDA 2020 vision. The revised rates were progressive according to income bands. Those earning $4,500 and below are not affected by the change.
I also wish to take this opportunity to thank Raja Segar for his dedication and passion in service to the community during his tenure as CEO. Under his guidance, SINDA increased its reach into the community. The SINDA 2020 review took place under his stewardship and he began the implementation process which is now picking up pace and reach under Barathan. We have achieved much, but there is more to be done. SINDA looks forward to working with the Indian community and other stakeholders and partners in helping our students to progress and achieve greater success.
Indranee T Rajah President
PRESIDENT ’S MESSAGE | 03
Numbers at a Glance
Intensive Educational programme participants
E D U C AT I O N Engaging
Project Teach students
Students awarded scholarships & study Awards
Students awarded for educational achievements
FA M I LY Nurturing
Parents participated in SINDA workshops
Children in enrichment programmes
Individuals benefited from SINDA Family Service Centre
Youth engaged in mentorship programmes
Individuals in the community
Youth engaged in leadership programmes
Youth facilitators/ trainers engaged
Indian Businessleadersâ€™ Roundtable members
Indian and religious organisations
Community reach through events
NUMBERS AT A GLANCE| 05
Income at a Glance 2014
Donation SINDA Fund Contribution
Tuition Programme Fees
Other Government Grants
Interest/ Other Income
Care & Share Funding
Total Income 2014
Net Investment Income
$627,531 $714,292 $3,479,821 $2,819,384 $46,857 $121,569 $49,031 $1,363,617
Total Income 2013
Expenditure at a Glance 2014
Community Engagement, Volunteer Management & Donor Relations
Publicity & Marketing Expenses
Administrative & Governance Expenses
Youth Development Programmes
Total Expenditure 2014
Total Expenditure 2013
INCOME AND EXPENDITURE AT A GLANCE | 07
M A X I M I S I N G E D U C AT I O N A L O P P O R T U N I T I E S F O R A L L S T U D E N T S
The right support at the right time Nur Humaira, 7, was the eldest of Madam Nisha’s three children. She was a bright-eyed child who was curious about everything. Unfortunately, she wasn’t doing very well with her studies and Madam Nisha couldn’t quite figure out why. With the newborn baby and second child, she had her hands full and barely any time to supervise Humaira’s studies personally. When Humaira entered Primary 1, Madam Nisha finally decided that she needed help with her child’s education. She remembered enrolling Humaira in SINDA’s Literacy and Numeracy programme for a short period of time. Humaira did well then, and Madam Nisha couldn’t think of a better learning environment. She approached the organisation once again and was recommended SINDA’s iLEAP.
Educating Minds Pre-school Programmes In a matter of weeks, Humaira made immense progress in her studies. She acquired a new found love for music and Maths, “especially addition!” she exclaims. Madam Nisha realised that Humaira’s foundation was lost after dropping out of the Literacy and Numeracy programme. The key to unlocking her potential was simple – consistency. With iLEAP’s weekly structured programme, surrounded by like-minded peers and dedicated teachers, Humaira was in a conducive environment to excel. And excel she did! Humaira is now at the top of her class for Maths and Tamil.
“I feel more assured knowing that I now have SINDA’s support in raising my child.” Madam Nisha has now taken it upon herself to tell other mothers of SINDA’s programmes, so that they too can benefit.
SINDA conducts pre-school programmes, such as the Literacy and Numeracy programme and the iLEAP programme for Indian children aged between 4 and 6. Such early intervention programmes give children a strong foundation and a head start towards better academic performance in Primary 1.
Literacy & Numeracy Programme The Literacy and Numeracy programme cultivates good reading habits amongst Indian children between 4 and 6 years old and helps them enjoy learning Maths through fun-filled activities developed by trained facilitators and volunteers. In 2014, the programme was conducted across 20 centres over 24 weeks in partnership with the Indian Activity Executive Committees (IAECs).
iLEAP Targeted at giving children the right foundation for formal schooling, the iLEAP programme caters to 6-year-old children with no prior preschool education and K2 children requiring additional academic support before entering Primary 1. In 2014, iLEAP was conducted in partnership with Sarada Kindergarten in two phases over 20 weeks. The first phase started from November to December before children attended Primary 1. In the second phase, iLeap teachers monitored the students till their first term of Primary 1 ended.
Pre-school in numbers Pre-school Programmes conducted
8 Pre-school children engaged in 2014
281 Children in Literacy and Numeracy Programme
110 Children in iLEAP
31 EDUCATION | 09
Soaring past challenges Jagdish Singh, 14, didnâ€™t get the same head start in life as most boys his age did. At the tender age of 10, he lost his mother. He was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy and has been confined to a wheelchair since a very young age. This always made him feel inferior to others, fearing that they were looking down on him.
Madam Beba first got wind of SINDA Tutorials for Enhanced Performance (STEP) through Niyaz, who thought STEP might help improve Jagdishâ€™s grades, and Madam Beba desperately agreed to give it a shot. Little did they know that change was about to happen.
His lack of self-confidence distanced himself from his friends, Niyaz and Shahim, whom he has known since Primary 4. In school, he was getting zeroes, far below what the quiet, intelligent young boy was capable of. The world seemed much smaller and closed up to Jagdish. This deeply worried his guardian, Madam Beba. Something had to change.
As Jagdish attended STEP, he started to meet new people. He was beginning to make friends, engaging them more than he had ever done before. Niyaz and Shahim were also in the programme, and the walls that surrounded him started to come down. He was opening up.
His grades also started to improve. He liked studying with his friends. It motivated him. His teacher, Ms Devi patiently encouraged him every day, working closely with him when he needed it. The environment the programme created was exactly what he needed to excel. What used to be zeroes are now stellar A’s. He finally found his stride. In the 2014 PSLE, Jagdish, after months of dedication and hard work, was awarded Best Overall in the Joint Tuition Awards which recognises the academic achievements of students. The entire STEP family was so proud of him that they threw the biggest, most exciting birthday party he’s ever had! Jagdish is no longer the same person he used to be. He’s more driven and has more friends. A self-confessed computer fanatic, he shares his passions with Niyaz and Shahim. Madam Beba noticed the change in Jagdish, and she couldn’t be happier.
“SINDA came at a right time when my boy was about to break both academically and emotionally.” Jagdish intends to follow his passion and become a software engineer, and hopes to be an inspiration to students with disabilities all over Singapore.
Tutorial Programmes Driving educational excellence among Singaporean Indian students is SINDA’s key focus. In line with this, SINDA runs several education programmes that support and supplement the academic pursuits of students.
STEP SINDA Tutorials for Enhanced Performance or STEP, is a holistic tutorial programme that offers affordable and quality tuition for Indian students in English, Maths and Science. Together with SINDA’s motivational programmes and all-rounded student services, STEP improves the academic performance of students in primary and secondary levels. In 2014, classes were conducted across 20 STEP centres islandwide. These centres were managed by Centre Principals and assisted by Centre Administrators who were appointed by SINDA.
Project Teach Project Teach is a school-based tutorial programme for English, Maths and Science. In 2014, 1,203 students from Primary 1 to 6 scoring C grades and below, were identified by school teachers and placed in Project Teach. Similarly, Maths classes were conducted for 101 students from Secondary 1 to 5 who scored B4 and below in Maths. Project Teach is conducted in collaboration with schools, parents and tutors and focuses on improving the academic performance of students.
STEP in numbers STEP students
2,951 STEP tutors
351 Project Teach in numbers Schools conducting Project Teach
64 Project Teach students
1,304 Project Teach tutors
79 EDUCATION | 11
Persisting against all odds Madam Susila Supamaniam, 33, spent most of her days dreaming of a better life. She looks after her disabled father, tends to her children and works round the clock without complaint. She didnâ€™t finish school and always wondered if it might help her get a higher paying job and eventually provide a better future for her family. Such thoughts would quickly be dismissed, as she knew that school was expensive and would not be able to afford it. But she never gave up. Opportunity presented itself one day when her search led her to SINDA. She approached the organisation and shared her story. With SINDAâ€™s help, she undertook a diploma with Kaplan.
It was perfect – an eight month diploma in Business Administration which was relevant as she used to work as a manager at a fast food branch. She was delighted, and started immediately. Delight soon turned to worry as the pressure to keep to her studies was ever so high. But she persevered. The day before one of her exams, her children fell sick and she had to pull an allnighter looking after them. The following morning, she set aside some time to study and get a quick wink. With barely any sleep and a night’s exhaustion, she still passed with flying colours!
“SINDA has helped me achieve my dream of getting a diploma. Now I can aim for bigger things.” Madam Susila graduated with a diploma in 2014 and she hasn’t stopped there. Determined to continue upgrading her skills and knowledge, she has applied for a degree scholarship. She confessed that a part of her motivation came from SINDA’s Family Service Centre counsellors, and she hopes to inspire her children to focus on their dreams.
Supporting Education Initiatives With the changing educational landscape, SINDA ensures that its educational programmes and services are up to date, offering the right teaching and learning support for students and tutors.
Study Awards and Grants SINDA partners with well-known educational institutions to offer study awards to individuals who seek to pursue higher studies and upgrade their skills. Similarly, study grants are also awarded to students. In 2014, 41 individuals received study awards and grants.
Curriculum & Tutor Training SINDA develops customised curriculum for its main tuition programmes - STEP and Project Teach - complementary to the Ministry of Education’s syllabus. In 2014, SINDA focused on Maths pedagogy and increasing Maths awareness. SINDA also trained STEP and Project Teach tutors and equipped them with the right skills and teaching pedagogy.
e-Learning Introduced in 2011, e-learning enhances teaching and learning at STEP centres and Project Teach schools. It also engages students through interactive learning and serves to enhance learning experience for all students. All STEP and Project Teach classes were e-Learning enabled in 2014.
Education Services in numbers Study awards and grants
41 Tutors trained
135 Classes that are e-learning enabled
84 EDUCATION | 13
Intensive Educational Programmes SINDA conducts intensive education programmes for Indian students from primary to tertiary levels. These programmes focus on Maths and Science to provide students with a better understanding of the subjects and help them perform better at the national examinations.
Maths & Me
Maths Express ‘O’
This 14-week Maths intensive revision programme helped 183 Primary 6 (Standard) students, master key techniques and strategies for the PSLE. Classes were conducted at community clubs and religious organisations.
Designed for ‘O’ level students to prepare them for landmark examination, this 14-week intensive programme enabled 43 students to master problem solving techniques and enhanced their speed and accuracy in solving Maths sums.
Science Busters SINDA introduced a new 6-week intensive workshop for Primary 6 (Standard) students. The programme enabled 57 students to grasp key techniques in answering challenging Science questions.
Maths in Focus Conducted for Primary 5 and 6 students who were scoring borderline grades and below, Maths in Focus taught 68 students useful techniques and simpler approaches to tackle challenging Maths sums.
Saadhana ‘A’ Level Tuition Offered by the National University of Singapore Tamil Language Centre (NUSTLS) and supported by SINDA and the Singapore Indian Education Trust (SIET), the Saadhana ‘A’ Level Tuition programme is highly subsidised and offers quality tutoring on core GCE ‘A’ Level subjects. It won the Gold award at the 9th and 10th NUS Student Achievement Awards and has benefited 115 students in 2014.
Intensive Educational Programmes in numbers Programmes
SINDA Spotlight Did you know?
students have benefited from SINDAâ€™s educational programmes in 2014
hours of learning have been clocked in at STEP tuition and Project Teach in 2014
See more photos online
EDUCATION | 15
Events at a Glance in 2014
IBR Fundraiser The Indian Business-leadersâ€™ Roundtable (IBR) raised $307,000 to benefit SINDAâ€™s tuition students with engaging and interactive e-learning Maths software.
Family Violence Roadshow Two road shows hosted informed over 1,000 people on the pervasiveness of family violence and the avenues available for assistance.
Malabar-SINDA Family Health Fair Essilor Charity Vision Screening SINDA and partners came together to benefit more than 300 students from low-income families with free eyescreenings and spectacles.
SINDA joined Malabar Gold & Diamonds in organising the inaugural Family Health Fair for over 350 adults; an MOU was also inked to continue this partnership for 3 years.
Book and Shelf Project
SINDAâ€™s Book & Shelf project was launched to provide free study kits to 70 low-income families - the kit comprised a shelf, study table and chair, with the National Library Board providing free books.
Volunteersâ€™ Tea SINDA volunteers lauded for their tireless efforts and dedication towards the community; close to 100 volunteers received long service awards.
Joint Tuition Awards Hosted by the Self-Help Groups for the 11th year to recognise over 570 students who were enrolled in the SHGsâ€™ tuition programmes and had achieved significant improvements in their results.
Community Forum SINDA announced revisions to the SINDA Fund contribution rates, which took effect on 1 January 2015; the Forum also saw Project Teach students recognised for their academic improvements at school.
Aug - Nov
Coming Home 50 youth volunteers came together in this 5-month home rejuvenation project to transform 11 poorly maintained homes into conducive living spaces.
SINDA Excellence Awards
505 Indian students across 25 academic, sports and arts categories honoured in this prestigious ceremony for excelling in their respective fields.
Positive Youth Awards Night 115 students celebrated for dramatically turning their lives around with guidance from SINDAâ€™s youth development programmes and trainers.
Back To School Festival
2,000 students received vouchers of $180 to kick-start the school year and enjoyed a fun-filled day at the zoo together with over 3,000 family members; event was fully sponsored by generous donors.
I N S P I R I N G Y O U T H S T O W A R D S G R E AT E R A C H I E V E M E N T S
From rebel to role model He was a teenager with a troubled history. Vignesh Kanagasabai, 18, started out life on the wrong foot. He ignored his supportive family, openly disrespected his peers and teachers and didn’t care about his academics. Fortunately, Vignesh had a guardian angel who didn’t give up on him. His school teacher enrolled him into SINDA’s Guidance and Mentorship Programme (GAME), thinking that it might alter his course in life. Vignesh constantly met mentors who instilled in him the belief that people could change for the better – and it started to rub off. He started to believe that he could do the same. He was more than just a rebel, he had so much to offer.
Empowering Youth By his second year in GAME, Vignesh had turned his life around. He had new friends, learned the importance of having a positive attitude and showing respect when it was due. Over time, his fellow GAME participants and mentors began to feel like family. They even wrote a song together – an effort that Vignesh is particularly proud of.
Youth Development SINDA engages Indian youth in a range of programmes that gives them access to mentors, role models and other sources of positive reinforcement. In 2014, SINDA conducted motivational and mentorship programmes which enabled youth to develop positive values, a healthy lifestyle and improve their academic performance.
In 2013, Vignesh was appointed a SINDA Peer Leader. He started to proactively inspire others by talking to them and tried convincing them to refrain from smoking and truancy. He also regularly volunteered to assist his project officer and mentors in facilitating GAME sessions.
Guidance And Mentorship Programme
The Vignesh today is a reinvention. A valedictorian and recipient of the Gold Award for GAME at the Positive Youth Development Awards, he has never forgotten what SINDA has done for him.
The Guidance and Mentorship Programme (GAME) is a group-based mentoring programme designed for secondary school students in need of guidance and support. In 2014, GAME Music, GAME Soccer and GAME Girls enabled 190 participants to pursue their passions in the sports and arts.
“SINDA taught me to
be a kinder and more
Senior Victory is a 10-week school-based, motivational programme that develops Secondary 1 and 2 students with low self-esteem to become confident and resilient individuals with positive attitudes. In 2014, 165 students were identified by school teachers and placed in the programme. 90% of participants coped better in stressful situations which helped them perform better in their academics.
understanding person who wants to help others.” He aspires to be a marine engineer and strives to be a positive influence in society.
Youth Development in numbers Participants
1,157 Facilitators & Trainers
45 Mentors & Peer Leaders
50 YOUTH | 21
Youth Leadership Programmes In addition to development programmes, SINDA believes in grooming youth as leaders for the future. SINDA’s leadership programmes cater to youth from post secondary institutions and above, inspiring them to become confident, active and passionate leaders.
SINDA Young Leaders Programme The SINDA Young Leaders Programme (SYLP) empowers aspiring youth to excel in community building, service and leadership. In 2014, 20 participants embarked on a 6-month journey, which enabled them to develop their leadership skills, understand social issues better through a learning trip to Kerala and develop their own social innovation projects.
Coming Home Piloted in 2014 to improve the homes of underprivileged Indian families living in poor conditions, Coming Home saw youth aged between 17 and 30 coming on
board this meaningful project as volunteers. Over six months, 79 youth teamed up to refurbish 11 homes into conducive study and living environments for families.
A’s the Race Leveraging on the ‘youth for youth’ model, this mentorship programme enabled undergraduate university students to mentor final year junior college, pre-university and polytechnic students who required motivational support to ace their landmark examinations. In 2014, 37 mentors and 42 students walked through a 10-month journey together, with the mentors providing continuous and reliable support for their mentees and leading them to success.
Youth Leadership in numbers Participants
Facilitators & Trainers
SINDA Spotlight Did you know?
youth benefited from mentorship and leadership programmes in 2014 On social media, there are
youth on SYC Connections
youth on YD Live
100 439 +
likes on YD Live (as at Dec 2014)
See more photos online
YOUTH | 23
E N G A G I N G PA R E N T S T O P L AY A N A C T I V E R O L E I N T H E I R C H I L D R E N ’ S L I V E S
Bringing up Dad When you think of a loving dad, what comes to mind is a patient, charismatic man who always inspires you. That was not Mr Gunesekaran Suppiah. He was a caring 51 year old who loved his son and daughters more than anything in the world, but he just couldn’t connect with them. A traditional father with a hot temper, Mr Gunesekaran had problems seeing eye to eye with his modern children. Talks and requests would often lead to heated arguments on a regular basis. He would almost always resort to shouting when they wouldn’t listen, and a part of him didn’t like what he was doing. Not wanting a strained relationship with his children, Mr Gunesekaran did what only a true father could – he put his children first.
Strengthening Families He decided that he would be the change he wanted to see in his family. If he wanted his children to become the men and women he’d always hoped them to be, he had to start leading by example. This led him to SINDA’s parenting workshops. Change didn’t happen overnight but Mr Gunesekaran could see the value in the workshops, and he kept at it. He slowly learnt how a father’s role in the family went beyond just providing financially for them. He discovered different parenting techniques and learnt the importance of patience and how to manage his temper. Most importantly, he started to listen to what his children were trying to say and see things from their perspective. Mr Gunesekaran wouldn’t say he’s a fully changed man. He’s far less hot tempered and more patient with his children. Nowadays he works with his wife to better understand his children.
“SINDA helped me to find the words I’ve always wanted to say…
Family Programmes SINDA believes in nurturing families for a better future. In-line with this, SINDA’s programmes and events aim at fostering stable and self-sufficient family units and empowering parents with essential life and parenting skills.
Modular Parenting Workshops
96 students from Primary 4 to 6 were challenged on their motivational, leadership and academic skills at the holiday camp held from 4 to 6 June 2014. Students were engaged in meaningful teambuilding activities and explored leadership roles through experiential games.
SINDA’s parenting programmes touch on key topics that encourage parents to establish stronger bonds with their children through positive parenting approaches. Each module, customised and conducted in English or Tamil, consists of 3 sessions. Upon completion, parents move on to other modules. In 2014, 112 parents benefited from these parenting workshops.
SINDA Junior Challenge On 22 March 2014, close to 200 STEP students engaged in fun activities during the school holidays. Primary 1 and 2 students took part in spelling bees, Primary 3 and 4 students took part in Maths quizzes and those in Primary 5 and 6 participated in Science experiments. Parents of these students were engaged through talks and lively discussions on effective parenting.
SINDA Parenting Conference At this annual conference, parents gather to discuss and debate issues, strategies and best practices with regards to parenting, while their children participate in fun activities. In 2014, 198 parents and 135 children participated in the conference.
and become a better father.” From sharing the love of soccer with his son to spending quality time with his daughters, Mr Gunesekaran now plays a more active role in his children’s lives and he loves it.
Family Programmes in numbers Family Programmes
Children in enrichment activities
2,235 FAMILY | 25
Life on reboot Life was not going as planned for Ms Mahaboob Bebe , 39. Recently divorced, jobless and responsible for a child at 24, she was feeling lost and emotionally exhausted. She didnâ€™t have a support group to turn to and she had spent most of her savings on her former marriage leaving her financially and emotionally wanting. Months passed by as she searched for a job without avail. On a meeting with SINDA for a job application, the social worker recommended Project Athena to her - SINDAâ€™s programme for single Indian mothers and their children. She didnâ€™t know what to expect, but she decided to give it a try.
She was immediately surprised to find out that she wasn’t the only single mother going through challenges. She wasn’t alone. Over time, she found the support and help she needed in other single mothers and her spiritual mentor. Whenever she would start to feel overwhelmed, she would tell herself to be strong, a characteristic she learnt from her late father. Whether it’s walking away from trouble, brushing away needless emotions and staying positive, she regained her confidence in life. It was as if she had a reboot.
“Life has been unkind to me, but I’ve learnt to be resilient and live my dream, fearlessly.” It was through SINDA, that she found her calling to help others. After graduating from Project Athena in 2010, Ms Mahaboob actively counsels her work colleagues and her friends, providing them with a pillar of support. Gone are the dark days and she has never been happier.
Assistance for Families SINDA also provides financial, emotional and motivational assistance to families in need through the SINDA Family Service Centre (SFSC). SFSC specialises in social work and counselling services to those who experience difficulties in their personal, work, marriage and family matters. In 2014, 4,835 individuals benefited from SFSC.
Single Parent Programmes Project Athena Designed for Indian single mothers and their children, Project Athena, empowers mothers to be confident and independent individuals. Since its inception in 2009, the project has reached out to 303 mothers and 607 children. In 2014, 37 mothers and 77 children benefited from the programme.
Project SPARK Project SPARK (Successful Parents And Resilient Kids) is a national initiative supported by Temasek Cares and initiated by the Self-Help Groups. The programme equips single parents to be economically self-sufficient through skills upgrading and grooming workshops. In 2014, 63 single mothers benefited from the programme.
Addressing Family Violence Family Violence Road Show 2014 saw SINDA increase its focus on the issue of family violence. SINDA together with the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) organised a Family Violence Awareness Campaign which comprised of road shows and media campaigns to raise awareness on the increasing family violence among Indian families. More than 1,000 people participated in the road shows and went away with a greater understanding of assistance avenues available to victims of family violence.
FAMILY | 27
Other Assistance Schemes at SINDA FSC Information & Referral Services rendered
872 Free Legal Clinic Families benefited
24 Case-Management / Counselling Problem areas dealt with: Financial issues, family violence, school dropout, marital issues, at risk youth and mental health issues. Families helped
Job Referrals and Skills Upgrading
Education-related Financial Assistance Schemes School Pocket Money Fund (SPMF)
207 NEU PC Plus
224 SINDA Bursaries
443 Back to School Study Kits Distributed
SINDA Spotlight Did you know?
Individuals received financial and motivational support in 2014
single parents were empowered
people received career support
874 students benefited from financial support for education See more photos online
FAMILY | 29
F O R G I N G A S T R O N G E R R E L AT I O N S H I P W I T H C O M M U N I T Y PA R T N E R S
An eye on the future Mr Jayanth Bhuvaraghan, 55, is a warmhearted man who feels that bettering yourself begins with helping others. As the Chief Corporate Mission Officer at Essilor Singapore and a member of the Indian Businessleaders’ Roundtable, Mr Jayanth was always looking for opportunities to give back to the community. By working with SINDA, he was able to do so by providing the children and youth with something they sorely needed – better vision. Mr Jayanth firmly believes that better education starts with better vision because,
“Being able to see and read properly will motivate students to become more interested in studying and this will lead to better grades.” That is why he decided to use his experience, networks and knowledge to initiate the SINDA-Essilor Charity Vision Screening which provided children from low-income families with spectacles. Through his efforts, nearly 300 students received free eye tests and spectacles. Mr Jayanth hopes to lead by example and inspire others to help the less privileged by continuing to contribute in any way he can.
Collaborating with Community Working with the People, for the People Community support is key to SINDA. SINDA’s initiatives are further strengthened by individuals and organisations joining hands with SINDA in reaching out to those in need. Tapping on the community’s resources and forging sustainable partnerships with organisations, has enabled SINDA to move forward in its mission.
The Indian Businessleaders’ Roundtable Established in 2011 under the auspices of SINDA, the Indian Business-leaders’ Roundtable (IBR) is a high-synergy platform consisting of 90 respected Indian entrepreneurs and professionals in Singapore. In 2014, as a true testament to capitalising on expertise and networks, IBR raised a total of $307,000 through a fundraiser to support SINDA’s e-learning initiatives for three consecutive years.
Collaboration with MOE schools and teachers In 2014, SINDA continued its collaboration with various educational institutions to conduct its programmes. In 2014, 380 SINDA Liaison Officers (SLOs) were appointed. These SLOs played a crucial role in helping SINDA reach out to students in need of assistance and spread awareness on SINDA’s programmes and services.
Sustainable Community Partnerships SINDA actively seeks and welcomes partnerships and collaborations with organisations both
within and outside the community. This enables SINDA to extend its reach and assistance to as many children and families as possible. In 2014, SINDA forged several first-time collaborations: Rajah and Tann Singapore LLP Contributed funds towards sustaining SINDA’s Back to School Festival till 2016. Essilor Vision Foundation, BridegAble, NPS International and Singapore Polytechnic Concerted collaboration to offer underprivileged students with free vision screenings and spectacles. Malabar Gold & Diamonds Contributed funds towards family health fairs which offered free health screening to low-income Indian families. Optimum Solutions, Lighthouse Club, Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce Foundation and Singapore Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry Established formal ties with SINDA to offer educational scholarships to Indian students.
Community in numbers Donations raised in 2014
$1,910,600 Pre-school teachers and SLOs engaged
450 Indian and religious organisations engaged
183 COMMUNITY | 31
The joy of volunteering Ms Lavanya Sugumar, 28, is a pretty good teacher. She loves kids and was a student at SINDA prior and found it very inspiring. So she thought to herself, why not volunteer as a tutor helping young kids in need? So she got the volunteering opportunity and thought this was going to be a breeze. Then she met Fazil, a special needs student who has a 75% hearing deficiency and studies with a unique syllabus. Fazil was weak in reading and writing, so she thought that would be a good place to start. However, communicating with each other proved challenging at the start. She had to be patient and try to understand Fazil. This was going to be her most challenging student yet - what worked with previous students didn’t necessarily work with him. As time passed, they both eventually developed their own special way to communicate. This helped Fazil immensely as he
was able to overcome his learning disability and do better in school. Thanks to the constant support of Ms Jawahar, Fazil’s mother, both Ms Lavanya and Fazil were able to build a strong connection and enjoy studying together. Ms Lavanya looks back to her earlier experience and realised that she found true joy in helping others. In the 3 years she’s been with SINDA, she never felt that the time she spent was in any way a sacrifice because she got back so much more from it.
“If contributing 2 hours a week changes lives, I’m happy to do it!” These connections and memorable moments have spurred her on to continue her volunteer work and encourage others to volunteer too.
Working with Volunteers SINDA’s volunteers are the engines that power the organisation’s efforts and keep many of its programmes running. In 2014, volunteers – young and old, individuals and corporate organisations, devoted time and effort to SINDA programmes. A majority of the volunteers assisted with ad-hoc activities such as the various SINDA events and the distribution of festive gift packs to the needy. Others were engaged in long-term programmes such as Project Read, Literacy and Numeracy programme, Guidance and Mentorship (GAME) programme and Legal Clinic.
Volunteers in numbers 15 to 24 yrs old
25-34 yrs old
35 to 44 yrs old
Coming Together during Festive Seasons Volunteers from 20 corporate, Indian and religious organisations came together for SINDA’s annual festive gift pack distribution exercise in 2014. They took time off their busy schedules to deliver $100 vouchers to 1,200 low-income families during Hari Raya, Deepavali and Christmas.
45 to 54 yrs old 55 yrs and above
Working with Children • Literacy and Numeracy Programme
Working with Youth • Guidance and Mentorship (GAME) Programme
Working with Family • Befrienders • Legal Clinic
Volunteers in 2014
Appreciating SINDA Volunteers SINDA held its Volunteers’ Tea Ceremony in 2014 to recognise the efforts and contributions of volunteers towards helping the Indian community. During the biennial ceremony, Guest-of-Honour, Mr Lawrence Wong, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth and Second Minister for Communications and Information, presented awards to 100 volunteers who had supported SINDA in significant ways.
Volunteering is multidimensional at SINDA.
Other Opportunities • Coordinators • Mentors • Facilitators
New volunteer sign-ups in 2014
• Volunteer Recruitment • Support & Development Activities See more photos online
COMMUNITY | 33
20,084 people served in 2014 across
programmes and initiatives
SINDA in Media
Educational events and topics - Awarding excellence & student achievements, all-rounded support for every child, SINDA tuition and enrichment programmes
Youth-related topics and themes – Volunteerism, role of youth in nation building
11% Community efforts – partnerships, fund-raising initiatives, support from the community
Family-related themes – Parenting, family-fun, inspirational topics
12,158 Facebook likes
active discussions on Social Media about SINDA and its programmes
1,917 Twitter followers
visits to SINDA website
SINDA in Media (cont.) Publications
Indian households reached through SINDA Connections newsletters
Weekly educational tips on Tabla newspaper
Media coverage was on mainstream media– The Straits Times, The Business Times, TODAY, Channel NewsAsia, Channel 5, Vasantham, Tamil Murasu, Berita Harian, Lianhe Zaobao, Lianhe Wanbao
Average call length
Marubadiyum Season 2 on Vasantham TV (Inspirational series)
Neenge Sollunga Season 6 on Vannathirai TV (Infotainment series)
Project Campus on Vannathirai TV (Info-Ed series)
vis Te le
To inspire the Indian community, especially youth, to aspire for greater heights, SINDA sponsored the following programmes in 2014:
839 Queries a month
Radio programmes •
Chillax on Oli 96.8FM (Youth Programme)
Kutties Galatta Oli 96.8FM (Children Programme)
See more photos and videos online
STATISTICS | 35
The Future 24 years after inception, SINDA today has evolved to meet the needs of a fast-paced and ever-changing landscape. Our programmes are increasing, and our help schemes assist almost every layer of the community. Our students, families and the Indian community as a whole, have made steady progress . SINDAâ€™s strategies will further evolve to counter social concerns, as the Indian community cannot risk falling behind. Our journey ahead may prove to be a challenge, but we will forge ahead - as a united Singaporean Indian community, working together, helping one another, engaging minds and transforming lives.
Singapore Indian Development Association No. 1, Beatty Road, Singapore 209943 Tel: 1800 295 4554 | Fax: 6392 4300 www.sinda.org.sg
Published on May 25, 2015