SINGAPORE- Madam Sufillah Pasarebu’s 12-year-old daughter needed a laptop for two weeks of home-based learning after undergoing an eye operation in December last year to treat bilateral lens subluxation.
The eye condition she was born with can lead to retinal detachment.
However, the 40-year-old housewife had limited funds to purchase a laptop for the older of her two children.
Her husband works as a freelance construction worker and is the sole breadwinner.
To her relief, she received a free new laptop as part of the home improvement programme under the WeCare @ North West – Service Weeks 2022 campaign.
The annual campaign also saw volunteers distribute festive packs to residents.
“Receiving the laptop was a big relief for me. It’s also easier for my daughter as she can see things on the bigger screen clearer and better,” said Madam Sufillah, whose younger girl is five years old.
Her family was among 68 households in six divisions in the north-west area provided with home improvements.
They reside in Chong Pang, Limbang, Marsiling, Nee Soon South, Sembawang Central and Ulu Pandan.
Mr Mustapha, who lives in Marsiling, had his faulty washing machine replaced with a new one.
The 74-year-old and his wife are unable to work due to their medical conditions and rely on monthly government assistance to get by.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign on Saturday (Jan 15), Mayor of North West District Mr Alex Yam said that the needs of residents, not only in his district but also across Singapore, have evolved.
“Beyond the usual bread and butter assistance that we’re used to in the past such as providing groceries, financial support, those continue to be important but we’re finding new areas where residents needs are.”
Since its inception in 2014, the campaign run by the North West Community Development Council (CDC) has assisted more than 142,820 residents living in homes under the public rental scheme.
Madam Sufillah’s family also received one of the 500 WeCare festive packs distributed to residents of the Ulu Pandan division on Saturday.
The festive packs were distributed by Mr Yam, Mr Christopher de Souza(Holland-Bukit Timah GRC MP), and 60 corporate volunteers from Bigfoot Logistics, Singapore Airlines and Sunray Woodcraft Construction.
The packs included 12 healthier choice food necessities and three vitamin products donated by Guardian Health & Beauty.
Recipients were able to customise their own packs, either by choosing items via an online form, or by personally selecting them at a Store@Woodlands, a pop-up community store.
Distribution of the packs had started on Feb 14 and will continue to Jan 30.
A total of 7,300 needy households living under the public rental scheme in 14 divisions in the north-west area are slated to receive the packs.
The CDC in a release said seven corporate partners will support vulnerable residents with home improvement items.
They include Bigfoot Logistics, which will be providing 16 families in the Ulu Pandan area with home improvement items and also by helping to install household items.
Group chief executive of Big-Foot Group of Companies Mr Sanny, who goes by one name, said: “Participating in Service Weeks has not only enabled us to make a difference, but also gives us a sense of motivation to continue making meaningful contributions in the community.”
Ms Ushalinee Benjamin, a 30-year-old who works for Bigfoot as a senior human resource executive, has been helping with the campaign as a volunteer since 2019.
“It’s a good opportunity to learn about the other side of society and how you are blessed enough to be able to give back to needy,” she said.