An Early Chinese New Year Present – for Jalan Kukoh Estate Residents

Yesterday, the needy residents of the Jalan Kukoh estate received an early Chinese New Year present, in the form of important food items.

Volunteers deliver food goodie bags to needy residents in Jalan Kukoh. (Credit: VSB & SKM).

Volunteers deliver food goodie bags to needy residents in Jalan Kukoh. (Credit: VSB & SKM).

Products were pledged by the general public through online hashtag campaigns

Amongst the items given out, were products pledged by the general public under the Singapore Kindness Movement’s hashtag campaign conducted in late 2014. This had encouraged netizens to document acts of kindness and graciousness online, using the hashtag #NationOfKindness. In all, 6,000 hashtags were used over the three months of the campaign, resulting in 6,000 items donated by the Singapore Kindness Movement’s (SKM) corporate partners, Gardenia, F&N and Super Group.

Given out by the Volunteer Switchboard

The goods were given out by the Volunteer Switchboard (VSB) who had partnered together with the SKM. This act of kindness – called the Project Home Sweet Home – was the latest in a series of monthly sessions. About 60 volunteers got together at the Jalan Kukoh RC, which acted as the base in a neighbourhood of mainly rental flats. Many of the residents, who were recipients of the packs themselves, also volunteered to bring these packs to their neighbours.

Said Ms Li Woon Churdboonchart, founder of VSB, “When we first started Project Home Sweet Home, it took some time before the resident volunteers grew receptive to the idea of volunteering to help their neighbours. Now they look forward to the sessions and some even bring their little ones to join us. The best part of this initiative is seeing the community pull together and show such concern for one another.”

Young children helping to pack goodie bags for VSB's pre-CNY distribution. (Credit: VSB & SKM).

Young children helping to pack goodie bags for VSB’s pre-CNY distribution. (Credit: VSB & SKM).

Hopes to empower the Jalan Kukoh community through this movement

Through this movement, the VSB hopes to empower the Jalan Kukoh community to help the needy in their midst by building a system, that can eventually be driven by the residents themselves.

Said Ms Churdboonchart, “The long-term goal of this initiative is to create a self-sustaining programme involving everyone in the Jalan Kukoh community. And if we can bring this system to other more vulnerable neighbourhoods all around Singapore, it is an opportunity for kindness in the community to blossom and spread.”

Added Dr William Wan, General Secretary of SKM, “When you think about volunteerism, what comes to mind is the well-to-do giving up their time to help those in need. But what the VSB has done, shows that kindness recognises no creed or status. It simply exists to better the lives of everyone around you. A little kindness goes a long way with each and every one of us.”

Distributions will conclude in April this year

The items, which have been distributed to the Jalan Kukoh residents over the past three months, will conclude in April this year.

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