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 – 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 – 1910

Alexandra Au Yong Another Week Beyond Leave a Comment

Dear Friends, Not too long ago, I was meeting a potential volunteer and the way she explained her motivation for wanting to support our work left me pondering after I left the meeting. “When you have been poor, it stays with you,” was a statement that hit me weightily. I could understand the words, but I doubt that I will …

Another Week Beyond – 1830

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond Leave a Comment

Dear Friends “Whenever I felt like giving up during a run, my coach will encourage me, and I would push myself. That’s how I relate my training to my life. Everyone faces difficulties, but it is how we persevere. When I push the kids during training, I think they can learn a lot from it,” says Thaslim, 20 years old …

Another Week Beyond – 1829

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond Leave a Comment

Dear Friends “Unleash my strengths!” sounds like a command we may use to summon our superhero alter ego. But maybe that’s why it attracted 12 children to attend a 6-activity programme designed by Jia Jia, a 19-year-old intern studying psychology at Ngee Ann Polytechnic. She felt that we often associate strengths with the competencies that bring success, and seldom do …

Another Week Beyond – 1828

Vairam Gopalakrishnan Another Week Beyond Leave a Comment

Dear Friends It was 4 am when Diljan received a knock on her door. “My husband has just died,” her elderly neighbour told her. Immediately, Diljan switched on the lights, brought her in and comforted her. As her neighbour began contacting her relatives, Diljan and her husband prepared a small reception table outside their flat so that family and friends …