Who says that Santa Claus only appears in December? A group of 70 volunteers from Building and Infrastructure (B&I) Programme Centre – specifically the Systems Management (SM) and Facilities Management (FM) entities  proved that was not so when they delivered gifts to the needy on 16 January 2015 as part of DSTA's Volunteer-A-Day Programme.

Once a year, everyone in SM and FM would get together for cohesion and fun. This year, however, we wanted to do something different – we wanted to show love and care to those in the society who may have difficulties coping with their daily needs.

Working with Yong En Care Centre (YECC), a charitable organisation that provides community service for the residents of Chinatown, we delivered about 180 presents to the needy. The presents included rice, milo, instant noodles and biscuits. In addition, we also spoke with 120 families to find out what else could be done to help them. The effort was also to help the YECC collect data so that they can follow up with the residents. 

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Beyond helping the needy, the VAD also served to remind the participants the importance of giving back to the society. Head (Navy/Ammo Facilities) Henry Tan said: "This VAD went beyond being a normal cohesion activity where we have fun and allowed us to help the less fortunate, so it was very satisfying. We should organise more of such activities."

Manager Ramakrishnan Gopala Krishnan agreed: "It was a worthwhile cause. In helping them, it also helps us to truly appreciate our lives and count our blessings."

"We hope that the little that we do today will go a long way in helping those in need and strengthen the spirit of volunteerism," added Assistant Director Lek Jiunn Feng.

In an email to the participants, Director (B&I) Ong Yew Hing wrote: "It is great that our staff took the opportunity of the cohesion event to help the less fortunate in our society. Well done!"

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