Scaling up of volunteer event
RSVP Singapore is going beyond a week of promoting senior volunteerism.
Seniors now have more opportunities to volunteer island-wide and they can do so from now till October. RSVP Singapore is scaling up its annual event Senior Volunteer Week to a National Senior Volunteer Month (NSVM) in partnership with the Ministry of Health (MOH). This year, there will be 50 unique volunteer activities across 50 locations and everyone is welcome to volunteer including members of the public, friends of RSVP members and family.
Koh Juay Meng, president of RSVP, said: “We took the plunge to scale up our Senior Volunteer Week because we wanted to encourage more seniors to volunteer. We believe that volunteerism is a meaningful way of paying back to our community. At the same time, we get a bonus because being an active volunteer is a good way to age successfully.” Currently, senior volunteerism is on a rise. In 2010, the participation rate was 10 percent, according to a survey by the National Volunteer and Philanthropy Centre (NVPC). This increased to 17 percent in 2012.
Koh said about this year’s event, “Last year, we engaged over 1,000 senior volunteers in our Senior Volunteer Week. This year, our target is 5,000. We are doing this in a variety of ways by partnering with other VWOs and community organisations.”
So what volunteer opportunities are there? You can volunteer as a photographer at VWOs, entertain the underprivileged, bring your pet dog or cat for pet therapy sessions for the mentally-disadvantaged clients, initiate makan sessions with your neighbours, set up refurbished computers for unprivileged children, become ambassadors for a hand hygiene campaign at a hospital, conduct PC maintenance workshops, bake cookies to distribute to the needy households, make handicraft work, and more.
You can sign up starting from now till the main month in September at the phone numbers indicated on the activity listing which can be downloaded from RSVP’s website here.
There are also briefing sessions available for volunteering newbies on April 9, 28, May 7, 14 and 21 from 4pm to 5pm. The Opening Ceremony for NSVM is on September 4 at Toa Payoh HDB Hub, where President Tony Tan will be the guest-of-honour and Minister Lawrence Wong will be a special guest.