The SG Cares Community Network will be expanded to better connect volunteers, social service organisations and community resources to areas of need, said Minister for Culture, Community and Youth Ms Grace Fu.
To endeavour this, Ms Fu said seven community-based organisations will serve as Volunteer Centres (VCs) to actively recruit, manage and develop a pool of volunteers, before deploying them to relevant volunteer programmes. So far, two VCs have been appointed in Bedok and Jurong East.
“We recognise the value in mobilising the strengths of communities. In the long term, we hope to grow “Neighbour Cares” in different neighbourhoods, where residents connect with and look out for one another, with the help of the VCs,” she added.
Another five VCs will be appointed by the end of the year, and the ministry will review the progress before expanding efforts.
Separately, Ms Fu also announced the launch of the SGSecure Community Network Crisis Preparedness Accreditation Scheme for religious organisations (ROs). The voluntary accreditation scheme will be rolled out in the second half of 2019 and will include a checklist and resource guide to help ROs improve their crisis response capabilities.
“We urge religious organisations to come on board, as we work hand in hand to ensure Singapore remains safe and united in the face of future crises,” Ms Fu said.
During the Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth’s Committee of Supply debate, other initiatives were also announced:
- Launch of SGYouth Action Plan for youths to debate issue and initiate change for the future
- Accessibility audit for museums and heritage institutions
- Implementation of drowning detection system at 11 public pools by April 2020
- Four more Active Health Labs by end-March 2019
- Introduction of canoeing and gymnastics ActiveSG academies
- A $3 million fund for national athletes to prep for the 2019 SEA Games, Asean Para Games, 2020 Olympics and Paralympics
- 52 new indoor school sports halls and 32 new free-to-play school fields under the Dual-Use Scheme
Meanwhile, Sport Singapore (SportSG) will ramp up efforts to promote sports at special education schools and disability centres by linking up these institutions with specialised coaches.
Ms Fu, who is also Leader of the House, concluded the 2019 Budget and Committee of Supply debate by thanking Members of Parliament for coming together to weave strategies to build a stronger fabric for a united Singapore. She also shared three key observations from the Committee of Supply debates:
- The need to put Singaporeans at the heart of policies
- Keep an eye on the future, even as we work on the present
- Space for civic participation in policies and plans
Ms Fu added that the hallmark of Singapore is its fiscal prudence and how the Government has made long term plans for the future, with the purpose of creating a better future for all Singaporeans.
Image Credit: Minister Grace Fu’s Facebook