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9 years, 67,000 young lives – and the President’s Award for Social Impact.
13 March 2014

I want to go out, but I know I cannot. If I go out, there will be no one to look after my mum and I will be very frustrated with myself, shared a teenage caregiver on screen, while a class of secondary school students watched on, and sympathised

HCA Hospice Care’s Young Caregivers (yCG) programme strives to help the younger generation relate to the elderly sick and dying. The programme has been nurturing empathy, care, and perseverance in the face of loss and grief since its official launch at Shuqun Secondary School on 19th July 2005.

We’re thrilled to announce that our efforts have been recognised – HCA Hospice Care has just clinched the 2013 President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Award for Social Impact on the 23rd of October at the President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Awards, organised by the National Voluntary and Philanthropy Centre (NPVC).

HCA Hospice Care was commended for its company-wide strategies, organisational and programme excellence, and ability to deliver sustainable impact. The methodical care our yCG team takes in the programme’s implementation, from outreach to schools to response analysis, was also a factor.

The President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Awards saw President Tony Tan presenting the awards to organisations that have reached the highest standards in encouraging the spirit of giving in Singapore.  The event lauded nine organisations in total, including Care Corner Counselling Centre and Standard Chartered Bank, who were awarded the President’s Award for Volunteerism in the Non-profit and Corporate categories respectively.

HCA Hospice Care President, Dr Seet Ai Mee, receives the award from President  Tony Tan. Copyright of the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre.

The yCG workshops

Armed with videos, presentations, and engaging activities, our yCG facilitators run workshops tailored to each class’s unique character and maturity. Students participate in activities ranging from games to spirited debates – interactive methods to help students grasp the compassion behind the care one should show.

  • Upper Primary students learn about life-limiting illness, and ways to show love and care.
  • Secondary students learn about caregiving, and to develop empathy for the elderly and elderly sick around them.
  • Post-Secondary students grasp the concept of a meaningful life, the importance of showing love and care to those around while we still can, and to cope with loved ones suffering from life-limiting illness.

Our yCG facilitators conduct workshops at primary, secondary, and tertiary institutes.

“The session made me realise that it is always never too late to care for someone. It is whether you want it or not,” an upper primary school student wrote on the session feedback form, while a post-secondary school student said an important learning point for him was to “show care and concern to everyone beside you even when he/she is not sick.” .

Post-workshop, many students put their knowledge to use by volunteering at HCA Hospice Care or other organisations. Our yCG team leads, Xin Yan and Cassandra have shared touching displays of empathy, such as instances when children donated their pocket money or were in tears outside our Day Hospice Centre.

However, the old saying goes that ‘Charity starts at home’ – and we’re definitely hoping for these children to grow closer to their older relatives, and form a strong, sustainable base of caregivers.

Are you a teacher or a student who’s interested in experiencing our programme with your students or schoolmates? Drop us a note at communications@hcahospicecare.org.sg, and find out more here! .