Monday, 23 January 2017

Giving her time to build others up

L-R: Ms Chia Ee Han (3rd from left), Mr Wong Fung Shing (4th from left) and Mr Tan Jing Qun (5th from left) are the winners of the Volunteer of the Year Award
Five years ago, 31 year old Chia Ee Han pushed the boundaries of her comfort zone and embarked on her first overseas volunteering trip with YMCA International Service Programmes to Cambodia. Since then, she has led three young working adults' and a junior college team to reach out to the overseas community. During the 8 day trip in Cambodia, she spent five days in Unaccompanied Association (UNACAS), a Children's Centre in Lech Wat, Phnom Penh where she taught English to the children and also helped with infrastructural work. The rustic living conditions taught Ee Han to appreciate life better, and inspired her to return as a volunteer leader, leading groups of working adults and students overseas to countries such as Vietnam, Cambodia and Myanmar with an aim to help improve education and infrastructures.

“The first year when I was the volunteer leader, we had three youths-at-risk who joined us on the trip. At the start they were reluctant to hear what we have to tell them. They would just sit in one corner and talk to themselves instead of serving the community. Initially we told them don’t do this and that, and said no to every of their requests. Then I think they felt they need to fight back, so that is why they don’t really want to listen to us. But when we sit down and talk to them nicely, and make them understand why they are here on the service trip, their attitude towards us actually changed, and we started to chit chat, talk and laugh together,” said Ee Han. “That’s one of the challenges I faced and overcame, and knowing how nine days of service benefited not only the locals but also the volunteers motivates me to return time and again as a volunteer leader,” she added.

For making significant impact to YMCA’s International Service Programme through her leadership and service contribution, Ee Han was presented the YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer of the Year Award at the YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer Awards Night on 20 January 2017. Organised by YMCA of Singapore, the YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer Awards Night was specially created to recognise and thank the volunteers who have made significant and outstanding contributions to the YMCA and to the various YMCA community services programmes for the year; and also to those volunteers who have made long term contributions to the organisation.

“Volunteers do so much to support our programmes and the value of their work is immeasurable,” said Mr Lo Chee Wen, General Secretary, YMCA of Singapore. “They do not seek recognition or the limelight but quietly go about making an immense difference to those in need. They are truly our unsung heroes and YMCA recognises and appreciates their contributions, and hope that the Awards can serve as a platform to encourage others to rise up to be community champions just like our volunteers and impact lives.”

Over 80 individuals, corporations and organisations received awards across five categories, namely Corporate Volunteer Excellence Award, Corporate Volunteer Long Service Award, Volunteer Excellence Award, Volunteer Long Service Award and Volunteer of the Year Award.

The full list of Award recipients are as follows:

YMCA-Lim Kim San Corporate Volunteer Excellence Award

3M Singapore
Barclays Bank PLC, Singapore Branch
Citi Singapore
Credit Suisse AG
International Y's Men's Club of Singapore (Alpha Chapter)
LINGJACK Engineering Works Pte Ltd
NTUC Fairprice Foundation Ltd
Prudential Assurance Co Singapore (Pte) Limited (Jeanette Pay & Associates)
PwC Singapore
Superior Multi-Packaging Limited
Telok Ayer Chinese Methodist Church

YMCA-Lim Kim San Corporate Volunteer Long Service Award
DHL eCommerce (Singapore) Pte Ltd
Foo Kon Tan LLP
NTUC Fairprice Foundation Ltd
PwC Singapore
Superior Multi-Packaging Limited
UPS (S) Pte Ltd

YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer Excellence Award
A Jaisaravana
Brian Kek Shu Huan
Chelsia Low
Cheryl Yeo Xin Hui
Chng Hui Shan Chloe
Chua Pearlyn
Chua Rui De
Clara Chong
Eddy Cheng Kuan Quan
Enid Tee Mun Xin
Fan Yunan
Haw Chee Yeng
Ho Shujun Ken
Ivan Toh Jun Liang
Jasmine Teo Jie Min
Joab Koh En Ze
Koh Jian Wei
Koh Yan Ting Michelle
Lee Si En, Ruth
Li Fusen
Lim Jia En
Lim Shi Ying Candice
Lim Xiao Qi
Lip Pin Han (Lie Pinhan)
Lynette Chang Yu Bin
Mathew Ang Cheng Long
Ng Bo Lin
Nivia Satriavi Soetrisno
Oh Chin Yang (Hu Zheng Yang)
Ong Yie Yin
Queenie Tan Lin Ling
Saih Shi Qi
See Yeu Huei Stella
Sherwin Tesalonika Thie
Sim Ai
Sitoe Wing Yan Samuel
Tan Jian Hui Scott
Tan Wen Kai
Tan Yangda Ian
Tan Yi, Rachel
Tang Wu Hwan, Ivan
Teo Qizi Chelsi
Teo Shi Min Shermin
Toh Chong Li, Joseph
Vivien Relyn Yong Hui Xia
Wong Yun Hong
Xu Baoyan
Yao Jiyi (Patrick)

YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer Long Service Award
Chew Hui Keong, Andrew
Chua Rui De
Foo Chee Wei Eddie
Ho Wai Min
Ko Jie Yan Jonathan
Lim Tong Li, Christina
Pang Jin Yi (Jinny)
Quak Yong Sheng
Tan Kar Wee
Teo Yong Hao
Tran Anh Phuong
Yvonne Ang Jie Ling

YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer of the Year Award
Chia Ee Han
Mak Wei Seng
Tan Jing Qun
Wong Fung Shing

Click here to view photos of the YMCA-Lim Kim San Volunteer Awards Night 2017.

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