Another Week Beyond – 1939

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Community Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, As the children were occupied with balloon sculpting, sand painting and paper airplanes, their caregivers put down what they wished for in their neighbourhood on little heart-shaped papers. The hearts then adorned a wall at the void deck where a community meeting was being held.  “My Dream Neighbourhood” was the theme and wishes included amenities such as a …

Another Week Beyond – 1938

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, During a drama workshop in December last year, some participants spoke about an incident of sexual harassment in their neighbourhood. It was disturbing to say the least, but the matter was eventually acted upon by the family of the victim.  The authorities were informed, and both the    victim and her family decided to move on.  However, from various …

Another Week Beyond – 1937

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Children and youth Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, On 21 Nov 2014, we received an email from Darren Tan who informed us that he had attended a kindergarten run by the Franciscan Missionaries of Mary as well as many of the activities we were running in the 70s and 80s.  He lived a stone’s throw from our previous office at Block 44, Beo Crescent and was …

Another Week Beyond – 1935

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Uncategorized Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, 5 years ago, we took stock of the contribution of volunteers within our organisation.  We wanted a metric to monitor our progress in harnessing the inherent goodwill within our community to scale our work.  Instead of meeting needs by proliferating professional helping services, we invited the involvement of volunteers into the lives of those we supported.  This was …

Another Week Beyond – 1934

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Children and youth Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, “What is effective supervision and guidance?” A young colleague who was supporting the youth leaders of our outdoor adventure club realised that it is not just giving instructions and expecting those listening to simply follow.  Having observed how much effort the leaders had been putting into organising an “Amazing Race,” she was concerned that they would be deeply …

Another Week Beyond – 1933

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Family Group Conference Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, A couple of weeks ago, we asked a group of mothers if the gifts we channelled into their neighbourhoods were important. We anticipated that they would say “Yes,” less we stop being a conduit for goodwill from the larger community.  “Not always,” was their answer but they do find it comforting receiving presents for their children because they …

Another Week Beyond – 1932

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Children and youth Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, To subtly introduce concepts such as colours, diversity, individuality and choice, the uniform at our Healthy Start Child Development Centre comes in a range of pastel colours.  However, shorts come in navy blue for all and every T-shirt though different in colour is printed uniformly with the school’s motif.  This feature evokes curiosity among parents and the children, …

Another Week Beyond – 1931

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Children and youth, Community Theatre, Forum Theatre Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, 6 years ago, to get young people into a meaningful discussion about teenage pregnancy, we cooperated with Babes Pregnancy Crisis Support to run a series of forum theatre performances. Together with the support of volunteers trained in drama, a colleague put together a play that got both adults and young people in a difficult but meaningful conversation.  The …

Another week Beyond – 1930

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond, Children and youth, Family Group Conference, Restorative Justice Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, Since March this year, parents from 2   families found it extremely awkward whenever they bumped into each other. Both mothers were also involved in our baking projects, but they cooperated dutifully in the interest of finishing the work. So, it was much relief to both families that they are on speaking terms once again after attending a family …

Another Week Beyond – 1929

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Uncategorized Leave a Comment

DearFriends, Two months ago, 52-year-old Hasan had a high fever and while waiting to see the doctor at the polyclinic, a nurse approached him to have his blood pressure taken. He was rather reluctant as he did not want to hear more bad news but was cheered when he was complimented for having a normal reading.  A few days later …