The Precious


457.5 hours

On the last Saturday of May, at the start of the school holidays, over a span of two and a half hours, 183 volunteers gathered to distribute Kim Choo dumplings to more than 600 elderly folks living in the HDB flats at Pine Close and Toa Payoh Lorong 8. That amounted to a total of 457.5 community hours, or close to two months of working hours!

The purchase of more than 900 Nyonya dumplings was made possible by the Care and Share fund and your giving, while the distribution of the festive food was conducted by volunteers who gave their most valuable asset: time.

Time is our most precious commodity, because there is nothing we can do to recover or stop time. Time cannot be saved, it can only be used wisely. When death arrives to stop our clock, it also expires our ability to connect and relate with our loved ones, hence an investment of our time to connect with others would be a wise choice. Volunteerism is noble and highly valued, because it involves what is precious.

Out of 12 blocks of flats at Toa Payoh Lorong 8, our team found there were vulnerable elderly folks residing in more than 270 units. These aged ones either live alone or live with others but without help, or they have mobility issues. Our agency purposed to organise a team of volunteers to visit these silver-haired friends twice a month, to ensure their physical well-being and to provide social support. Doing so would require 180 volunteers giving 90 minutes twice a month for a span of six months—that’s 3,240 community hours or 13 and a half months of working hours.

A report on says that, in Jan 2016, Singaporeans spent slightly more than 90 minutes each day on social media. Spending one day less on social media would allow us to make a significant impact for the pioneer generation.

If you would like a twice-a-month social media detox or if you know of a friend who would like to volunteer their time for the elderly, email us at

Thank you for taking time to read this newsletter—you are already making a difference, and on behalf of the community, we thank you.

by Kenny Low