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Updates Summary Page | SPD - Singapore

Updates Summary Page

In Conversation with Senior Trainer, Lim Yee Ming

In Conversation with Senior Trainer, Lim Yee Ming

26 May 2017

Over a morning chat, senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam spoke to our senior trainer, Lim Yee Ming, who shared his passion for his job, looking back at the 10 years he spent helping to enable people with disabilities in SPD.

Breaking Barriers to a Productive Life

Breaking Barriers to a Productive Life

26 May 2017

The SPD Sheltered Workshop is a supervised environment filled with optimism and community spirit. May Chan and many other persons with disabilities receive training and achieve some measure of self-reliance engaging in contract work secured from commercial organisations, while at the same time contributing to the society in small but important ways. We look into the work provided at the Sheltered Workshop.

Strategies to Cope with Caregiver Stress

Strategies to Cope with Caregiver Stress

26 May 2017

Clemaus Lim, senior manager of the Community & Social Service Department which runs the Specialised Case Management Programme (SCMP), sheds light on the stress that caregivers feel resulting from taking care of their charges, and strategies that can help them cope better.

In Conversation with Occupational Therapist, Dawn Ching

In Conversation with Occupational Therapist, Dawn Ching

12 May 2017

The job scope of an occupational therapist ranges from enhancing physical and psychological functions and facilitating independent living to improving the lives of people with disabilities (PWD) or special needs. Under the SPD Therapy Hub arrangement, Dawn Ching supports SASCO DACE, a dementia daycare centre catering to the elderly with cognitive impairments. We speak to Dawn on her responsibilities as an occupational therapist and what motivates and spurs her on in her work.

A Mother’s Heart: Mdm Doris Lai

A Mother’s Heart: Mdm Doris Lai

12 May 2017

As Mother's Day inches closer, we sat down for a chat with Mdm Doris Lai, a wheelchair-user and single mother of a teenaged girl who has a profound hearing problem. We got to hear the loving and supportive mother’s story - how life changed for them after an accident, and how she persevered and emerged as a strong parent for her child.

Letter on Being Caught in a Catch-22 Situation as Charities Try to Improve Governance

Letter on Being Caught in a Catch-22 Situation as Charities Try to Improve Governance

12 May 2017

Voluntary welfare organisations (VWOs) are working to build strong systems and processes to improve governance practices. However, there are some challenges VWOs face in this area. Abhimanyau Pal, executive director of SPD, writes about the obstacles encountered by VWOs in the journey to fortify governance practices in the organisations.

Second SPD Charity Golf Raises $300,000 for People with Disabilities

Second SPD Charity Golf Raises $300,000 for People with Disabilities

28 April 2017

SPD turned half of the 18-hole golf course at Raffles Country Club into an interesting obstacle course for 112 golfers who turned up to support our second charity golf tournament on 21 April. A total of $300,000 was raised with the strong support of the business community and volunteers, including Emeritus Senior Minister Mr Goh Chok Tong who graced the event as our Guest-of-Honour. 

Celebrating Every Truimph Together – Gan Boon Leong

Celebrating Every Truimph Together – Gan Boon Leong

28 April 2017

Many would agree that 45 years is a long time to be working in an organisation. Mr Gan Boon Leong, 68, a master craftsman at SPD’s Sheltered Workshop, received his long service award for 45 years of service in SPD this year. Senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam finds out more from our veteran.

Alternatives to Screen Time for Children

Alternatives to Screen Time for Children

28 April 2017

Parents handing over their mobile devices to their children to keep them quiet or occupied is a common sight these days. However, excessive use of this method for short-term peace and quiet may have long-term adverse effects on children. SPD@Tampines senior occupational therapist Pow Weiting shares other ways to keep children occupied, sans the use of modern technology.

Screen Time and Children

Screen Time and Children

13 April 2017

As digital technologies increasingly become tools that we use at work and home, children inevitably seek to emulate this usage. Although technology has educational and other benefits for children, how much exposure to technology is considered healthy? SPD@Tampines senior occupational therapist Pow Weiting shares her insights.

 

MOLLY Goes to SPD@Jurong!

MOLLY Goes to SPD@Jurong!

13 April 2017

SPD@Jurong, which offers the Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC), collaborated with the National Library Board to bring mobile library bus MOLLY to the centre so that our children can enjoy an immersive library experience.

Thanks to All Supporters for Making the SPD Flag Day 2017 a Success!

Thanks to All Supporters for Making the SPD Flag Day 2017 a Success!

13 April 2017

The wet and gloomy weather last Saturday (8 April) may have discouraged many from stepping out of their homes. However, it did nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of the 1,000 SPD Flag Day 2017 fundraisers who went on an island-wide street collection in aid of people with disabilities.

SPD Onward with Vision 2020

SPD Onward with Vision 2020

13 April 2017

SPD’s executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal kicked off this year’s Organisation Excellence Day at the MDIS campus auditorium on 31 March by sharing SPD’s journey over the past one year and launching Vision 2020 which will guide us in our client-centric approach and creating sustainable resources.

SPD Launches Training and Mentorship Programme for Youths with Disabilities

SPD Launches Training and Mentorship Programme for Youths with Disabilities

30 March 2017

More than 50 social entrepreneurs, corporate philanthropy partners and youth leaders gathered at the Red Box on 18 March to discuss the topic of giving back to the community. Themed “Moving Forward by Giving Back”, the dialogue kicked-off SPD’s newest initiative – the SPD Youth Development Programme (YDP). The speakers consisted of SPD President and Nominated Member of Parliament Ms Chia Yong Yong, Ms Debra Lim, co-founder of social enterprise Society Staples, and Mr Chia Boon Chong, Director, Corporate Sustainability, SingTel. The discussion was moderated by social entrepreneur Ms Phua Hui Jia, founder of Skillseed.

Caregivers Loosen Up on Wellness Day

Caregivers Loosen Up on Wellness Day

30 March 2017

Create, Express, Relax - these words were central to the theme for this year’s Caregivers’ Wellness Day organised by SPD’s Community and Social Service Department (CSSD). Held at the SPD Ability Centre on 17 March, the event provided an opportunity for caregivers to unwind, make new friends, and enjoy an afternoon of fun and rest.

SPD Charity Show 2017 Showcases Abilities of Persons with Disabilities

SPD Charity Show 2017 Showcases Abilities of Persons with Disabilities

30 March 2017

Close to 20 SPD beneficiaries performed alongside more than 30 popular local and foreign artistes to raise $4.13 million at the SPD Charity Show 2017 on 19 March. The show, held at Mediacorp’s new theatre, was graced by Defence Minister Dr Ng Eng Hen. We bring you some photos of that evening.

Celebrating Every Triumph Together - Kane Chan En Ci

Celebrating Every Triumph Together - Kane Chan En Ci

17 March 2017

When 6-year-old Kane enrolled in SPD’s Development Support Programme (DSP) last year, he was having difficulties coping in his kindergarten. Kane’s teacher had concerns over his lack of interest in learning and his inattentiveness in class, which could possibly be because of his poor English leading to difficulties following in class.

Music Therapy for People with Disabilities

Music Therapy for People with Disabilities

17 March 2017

Our clients at the Day Activity Centre always enjoy themselves at the regular music sessions conducted by volunteers from VocalHeart. SPD physiotherapist Lee En Ting shares in this article how music therapy can be beneficial for people with disabilities.

SPD Brought the Community Together to Know More about Disabilities

SPD Brought the Community Together to Know More about Disabilities

17 March 2017

The rain in the morning of 4 March did little to dampen the spirits of close to 900 visitors and volunteers who gathered for the SPD Open House at the SPD Ability Centre on Peng Nguan Street. The event was organised with the aims of fostering greater understanding and acceptance of persons with disabilities in the community.

Chefs to Whip Up Delectable Cuisines to Encourage Donations at SPD Charity Show 2017

Chefs to Whip Up Delectable Cuisines to Encourage Donations at SPD Charity Show 2017

03 March 2017

Outdoor cooking will make its debut in a televised charity show in the SPD Charity Show 2017 《SPD 真情无障爱》. The artistes and segments to the upcoming SPD’s sixth televised charity show since 2007 were introduced in a media conference held at the SPD Ability Centre on 27 February. In the event, it was revealed that Singapore’s celebrity chefs Eric Teo, Heman Tan, Charlie Tham and Pung Lu Tin would be displaying their cooking prowess in order to raise funds for people with disabilities.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Teo Peng Peng

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Teo Peng Peng

03 March 2017

Mr Teo Peng Peng, 48, is deaf and lost his left leg in a car accident 16 years ago. Over an afternoon chat, Peng Peng shared more of his story with us, which is recounted here by SPD’s senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam.

SPD@Bedok and SPD@Tampines Open Doors to the Community

SPD@Bedok and SPD@Tampines Open Doors to the Community

03 March 2017

SPD's new EIPIC centres organised open houses over two weekends - SPD@Tampines on 11 February and SPD@Bedok on 18 February - to allow residents living in the neighbourhood to have a better understanding of what we do and who we support.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Josiah Ong – Growing Up with Tourette’s Syndrome

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Josiah Ong – Growing Up with Tourette’s Syndrome

17 February 2017

Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation scholar Josiah Ong shares how his tics started, his challenges growing up with Tourette’s Syndrome and how he is proud to say he is living with his disability today.

“Breaking Barriers” Campaign to Change Mindsets Regarding Disability

“Breaking Barriers” Campaign to Change Mindsets Regarding Disability

17 February 2017

Environmental, attitudinal and institutional barriers often inhibit persons with disabilities and keep them from stepping out into the community to do the things that they like, and be where they want to be. With that in mind, SPD initiated the “Breaking Barriers” campaign to remove these barriers to inclusion.

SPD’s Roving Exhibition Captures Inclusion around Singapore

SPD’s Roving Exhibition Captures Inclusion around Singapore

17 February 2017

The SPD “Let’s Focus on Inclusion!” photo contest was held from September to December last year. Singaporeans were encouraged to whip out their smartphones or cameras to capture moments of inclusion. The winning photos are now roving different parts of Singapore to spread the message of inclusion of people with disabiliites.

SPD Gives Back

SPD Gives Back

03 February 2017

In the last quarter of 2016, staff across the organisation took time to help out at other voluntary welfare organisations as part of our corporate social responsibility programme. In its second year, our staff were given one day to carry out their voluntary duties and carrying forward the goodwill that we have from the community.

Little Lions Usher in the New Year

Little Lions Usher in the New Year

03 February 2017

Children from the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre at the SPD Ability Centre spread Chinese New Year cheer to the staff and clients at the Sheltered Workshop and the Day Activity Centre (DAC) on 25 and 26 January. With their teachers and caregivers in tow, the little ones put on a rousing lion dance routine to the delight of the audience.

SPD Celebrates Occupational Therapy Day 2017

SPD Celebrates Occupational Therapy Day 2017

03 February 2017

In the tradition of celebrating the annual Occupational Therapy (OT) Day at SPD, our occupational therapists organised games and activities that challenged the motor and cognitive skills of staff and clients.

Visit Us at Our Upcoming Open House in March

Visit Us at Our Upcoming Open House in March

03 February 2017

SPD will be embarking on a 10-week public education campaign starting from early February 2017. Through this campaign, we hope to increase disability awareness, empathy and greater support for persons with disabilities with meaningful and fun-filled activities.

Singapore Ranked 28th in the World in Giving

Singapore Ranked 28th in the World in Giving

20 January 2017

Since 2010, the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) in the United Kingdom has been publishing the World Giving Index Report annually, providing insights to global giving behaviour. SPD advocacy senior analyst Ms Poh Sho Siam gives an overview in this article of how Singapore has fared as compared to other countries in the world.

Benefits of Exercise for People with Dementia

Benefits of Exercise for People with Dementia

20 January 2017

About 10 per cent of people aged 65 and over has dementia. SPD physiotherapist Gerda de Jong shares in this article how exercise can have a positive impact on the well-being of people with dementia.

SPD Education Programme Extends Its Support to Students with Sensory Disabilities

SPD Education Programme Extends Its Support to Students with Sensory Disabilities

20 January 2017

More than 30 years after the SPD Education Programme (EP) was launched to support students with physical disabilities from low-income families in mainstream schools, it now extends its support to students with sensory disabilities in similar underprivileged situations.

NatSteel-SPD Education Progamme Bursary Brings Youth Closer to His Dreams

NatSteel-SPD Education Progamme Bursary Brings Youth Closer to His Dreams

20 January 2017

Jagdish Singh, 16, is no stranger to the SPD Education Programme Bursary Awards, this year being the seventh consecutive year that he is receiving it. The bursary programme has opened up new opportunities for him over the years and is helping him to work towards realising his dreams.

Meet Our SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2017 Recipients

Meet Our SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2017 Recipients

20 January 2017

Administered by SPD and sponsored by NatSteel Holdings, the SPD Youth Aspiration Award provides a $5,000 grant that allows youths with disabilities to develop their interests and talents in the areas of visual and performing arts, sports and community service.

Graduation Parties 2016

Graduation Parties 2016

06 January 2017

Take a look at the graduation ceremony and performances as we celebrated the achievements of the children enrolled in our Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC), as well as clients in our Day Activity Centre. 

In Conversation with Speech Therapist Valerene Tan

In Conversation with Speech Therapist Valerene Tan

06 January 2017

Speech therapists are a rare breed in Singapore. Even with an increased demand for speech therapy services across different settings in Singapore, it is heartening to know that working in the social service sector is still the top choice for some of them. Dawn Wee, SPD’s Programme Head for Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC) and Continuing Therapy Programme (CTP), had a chat with Valerene Tan, speech therapist with the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre, and got to hear her motivations for joining and staying in the sector.

Letter on Needing More Public Education to Make People with Disabilities and their Caregivers Feel Welcome

Letter on Needing More Public Education to Make People with Disabilities and their Caregivers Feel Welcome

06 January 2017

Even as Singapore progresses towards being a more inclusive society by making its physical assets, such as public transport and infrastructure, more accessible for people with special needs, communication and psychosocial barriers to inclusion still exist as the general public may be apprehensive about interacting with persons who look or act differently. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares on how public education is necessary to gradually change this lack of social consciousness and empathy towards persons with special needs in a letter published in Today’s Voices on 28 December 2016.

What it Takes to Nurture Young People with Disabilities

What it Takes to Nurture Young People with Disabilities

23 December 2016

After her record-breaking feats last year, a bond-free scholarship was launched under the name of Singapore’s golden girl Yip Pin Xiu at the Singapore Management University. It is a big stride ahead to a more inclusive society and SPD Executive Director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares his views in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 15 December 2016.

Letter of Appreciation from a Primary School Student

Letter of Appreciation from a Primary School Student

23 December 2016

Speaking on the theme of resilience at the Children’s Day Concert at Methodist Girls’ School (Primary) in October, SPD President Ms Chia Yong Yong shared stories of her experience growing up with a disability. Here is a letter from one of the students, Valerie Lee, who shared how the speech impacted her.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Keagan Lim

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Keagan Lim

23 December 2016

Support from his parents, professionals and his teachers have helped create an effective learning environment for Keagan Lim, a cheery boy who attended SPD’s Continuing Therapy Programme (CTP) at SPD@Tampines.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Shee Shu Xin, “I can, I can, I can make a difference.”

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Shee Shu Xin, “I can, I can, I can make a difference.”

09 December 2016

SPD volunteer Shee Shu Xin shares her rehabilitation journey after her spinal cord injury and how she learnt to focus on “I can” instead of ‘I can’t”.

Occupational Therapy for Older Adults with Chronic Diseases

Occupational Therapy for Older Adults with Chronic Diseases

09 December 2016

Ageing can be seen as a triumph of development, whereby people are living longer because of better nutrition, sanitation, health care, education and economic well-being. However, it can pose a set of social and economic challenges, especially if older individuals are struck by chronic diseases. SPD’s senior occupational therapist Janet Pua shares how occupational therapy can play a part in improving the lives of older adults with chronic diseases.

Happy Volunteering

Happy Volunteering

09 December 2016

With our limited resources, volunteers play an important role, helping to provide additional help to SPD’s programmes and services from time to time. A happy volunteering experience comes from a good partnership between both the organisation and the volunteer. Here, regular volunteer Koh Sok Cheng (extreme right) shares her volunteering experience at SPD.

Hack-A-Toy for Children with Special Needs

Hack-A-Toy for Children with Special Needs

25 November 2016

DSO National Laboratories, Singapore’s national defence research and development organisation, chose to partner SPD for its community project Hack-a-Toy this year. More than 50 engineers from DSO participated in the five-month-long effort to modify 51 toys and 68 switches to suit the needs of children with special needs. SPD worked with DSO to identify toys that the children would enjoy and switches they would benefit from. 

SPD Speech Therapy Team Presents: Café Therapy@Tiong Bahru

SPD Speech Therapy Team Presents: Café Therapy@Tiong Bahru

25 November 2016

SPD’s speech therapists set up for one day the ST Cafe on 18 November at the SPD Ability Centre to give SPD staff and clients an opportunity to experience augmentative and alternative communication, as well as a taste of modified drinks so that they can understand more about communication and swallowing difficulties.

‘Count Me In’ Charity Concert Raises Close to $300,000 for People with Disabilities

‘Count Me In’ Charity Concert Raises Close to $300,000 for People with Disabilities

25 November 2016

It was an evening to remember as the much-lauded Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) performed a fusion of traditional Chinese music pieces with popular Broadway and Western classical crossover numbers under the baton of world-renowned music director Maestro Tsung Yeh at SPD’s ‘Count Me In’ Charity Concert on 18 November at the Capitol Theatre.

SPD Clients and Volunteers Show Support for Inclusion at Purple Parade

SPD Clients and Volunteers Show Support for Inclusion at Purple Parade

11 November 2016

An enthusiastic wave of purple swept into Suntec City on 5 November as some 10,000 people turned up at the Purple Parade all dressed to the occasion. Into its fourth year, the event presents an opportunity for the disabled community to spread the message of inclusion and promote greater understanding of issues that people with special needs face and to push for greater integration of people with disabilities into mainstream society.

Fun Learning for Children During Trick-or-Treat

Fun Learning for Children During Trick-or-Treat

11 November 2016

Close to 50 children from our Building Bridges EIPIC Centre went trick-or-treating at offices located at the SPD Ability Centre. The activity was started last year by teachers and therapists who felt that this could be a fun platform in which they could also incorporate individual learning goals of the children.

Conversation with Psychologist Pearl Chu

Conversation with Psychologist Pearl Chu

11 November 2016

Pearl is a part of the early intervention support team at SPD@Jurong. A psychologist, Pearl works with both our young clients and their caregivers to achieve the best outcomes. UPDATES caught up with Pearl over her experience working at the centre for the past one and a half years.

President Tony Tan Confers SPD the President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Award for Non-Profit Organisations

President Tony Tan Confers SPD the President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Award for Non-Profit Organisations

11 November 2016

Dr Tony Tan, President of Singapore, conferred SPD the President’s Volunteerism & Philanthropy Awards (Non-Profit Organisation) in a ceremony held at the Shangri-la Hotel Singapore on 9 November. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal accepted the award from Dr Tan on the organisation’s behalf.

Better Vision for SPD Clients on World Sight Day

Better Vision for SPD Clients on World Sight Day

28 October 2016

A team led by social worker Glenn Seet brought 17 clients from SPD’s Transition Programme for Employment (TPE), Sheltered Workshop, Employment Support Programme (ESP) and Specialised Case Management Programme (SCMP) to an event held at the Singapore Polytechnic (SP) on 13 October to commemorate World Sight Day.

October is AAC Awareness Month - ‘I’ve got a lot to say!’

October is AAC Awareness Month - ‘I’ve got a lot to say!’

28 October 2016

‘I’ve got a lot to say’ was the theme of the party organised for a group of young clients and their caregivers at the Enabling Village on 11 October to celebrate the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Awareness Month. The group of seven boys and girls, aged 5 to 12 years old, attends training at Tech Able to learn to express themselves and communicate with others better using AAC devices.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Lee Yoke Sui

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Lee Yoke Sui

28 October 2016

Lee Yoke Sui is a client at our Day Activity Centre (DAC) who is always full of smiles. She was born prematurely and was diagnosed with spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy at birth. Prior to the DAC, Yoke Sui had limited social interaction and rarely participated in leisure activities. Her days are now more enriching and meaningful after joining the DAC. 

Understanding and Exploring Different Sides of Singapore

Understanding and Exploring Different Sides of Singapore

14 October 2016

Trainees from SPD’s Sheltered Workshop got to know more about Singapore’s rich culture and saw the more rustic side of the garden city, as they ventured off the beaten track.

SPD Sports & Play Day 2016

SPD Sports & Play Day 2016

14 October 2016

The spirit of friendly competition was in the air as 90 children from SPD’s Building Bridges EIPIC Centre at the SPD Ability Centre and SPD@Jurong gathered at Jurongville Secondary School on 24 September for the SPD Sports & Play Day 2016.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Joan Ow and Natania Huang

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Joan Ow and Natania Huang

14 October 2016

For this champion caregiver story, our Programme Head for Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC) and Continuing Therapy Programme (CTP), Ms Dawn Wee, talked to the vivacious Mdm Joan Ow, 45, mom to Natania Hwang, 10, who has Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Natania is currently receiving occupational therapy with the CTP at SPD Ability Centre. Here, Joan answers 10 questions and shares with us her biggest hurdle to date, what keeps her going and her wish for her daughter.

Meet Our Four Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship Recipients

Meet Our Four Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship Recipients

14 October 2016

Four young Singaporeans with disabilities, (from left) Tan Jun Long, Raymond Zheng, Tan Jian Hao and Noah Si were awarded the Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship to pursue tertiary education in information technology (IT) related fields. They received their awards from Guest-of-Honour Ms Low Yen Ling, Parliamentary Secretary, Ministry of Education & Ministry of Trade and Industry, at an awards ceremony held at ITE College Central on 7 October. Let's get to know more about our scholars.

Children with Mild Developmental Needs Require Continual Support

Children with Mild Developmental Needs Require Continual Support

30 September 2016

It was reported that about 4,000 children were diagnosed with mild development needs last year by the Child Development Programme (CDP) at the KK Women's and Children's Hospital and the National University Hospital, a 60 per cent increase from the about 2,500 new cases diagnosed in 2010. The increasing number of children diagnosed with developmental needs makes it necessary to expand help to this group of children. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares the need for continual support for children with mild developmental needs in this letter published in Today Voices on 6 September 2016.

APB Foundation Scholars with Disabilities Excel Beyond Academics, Aspire to Impact Society

APB Foundation Scholars with Disabilities Excel Beyond Academics, Aspire to Impact Society

30 September 2016

Three university undergraduates, Sarah Lim, Joshua Ong and Teo Zi Lin, received this year’s Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities from Guest-of-Honour Mr Ang Wei Neng, Member of Parliament for Jurong GRC, in a ceremony held at the Enabling Village on 22 September. Let’s get to know more about our scholars.

SPD Receives Awards for Good Governance and Outstanding Quality Improvements

SPD Receives Awards for Good Governance and Outstanding Quality Improvements

30 September 2016

Every now and then, something encouraging happens that affirms that the steps we take and measures we adopt are indeed right. Following the accreditation by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) in June, we are very proud to announce another three awards that SPD received on 28 September. We were awarded the Charity Governance Award 2016 for Large Charities/IPCs category, and also recognised as one of the inaugural Charity Transparency Award recipients. We are also privileged to receive the Team Award for Service Quality Improvement (Merit) under the Intermediate and Long Term Care (ILTC) Awards.

Living with Parkinson’s – Means to an Active Lifestyle

Living with Parkinson’s – Means to an Active Lifestyle

16 September 2016

Parkinson’s disease is a long term disorder of the central nervous system that mainly affects the motor system. The symptoms are progressive and generally come on slowly over time. People with Parkinson’s disease require different levels of assistance and some wish to remain as independent as possible. SPD physiotherapist Ethirajulu Mahalakshmi shares some exercises for people with Parkinson’s disease.

Conversation with Senior Paediatric Physiotherapist Chandra

Conversation with Senior Paediatric Physiotherapist Chandra

16 September 2016

World Physiotherapy Day falls on 8 September every year. It is a day when physiotherapists the world over are celebrated for their commitment towards helping people make positive changes to their health and lifestyles. Sivanandam Chandrasekaran, or Chandra as he is affectionately known within SPD, is a senior physiotherapist helping children under SPD’s Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC). We catch up with him to find out more about what his typical day is like.

Happy Hatters Unite for Inclusion at the SPD Ability Fun Walk

Happy Hatters Unite for Inclusion at the SPD Ability Fun Walk

16 September 2016

A sea of yellow and green was spotted at the Punggol Waterway Park in the early hours of 10 September as more than 1,000 participants of the inaugural SPD Ability Fun Walk turned up in their top hats as a show of support for people with special needs.

Letter on Considering the Needs of Disability Groups When Improving Services

Letter on Considering the Needs of Disability Groups When Improving Services

02 September 2016

SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal calls for products and the environment to be made usable to everyone in this letter published online in TODAY Voices on 25 August 2016.

SPD Holds 52nd Annual General Meeting

SPD Holds 52nd Annual General Meeting

02 September 2016

SPD’s 52nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on 27 August 2016 at the SPD Ability Centre.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Bryan Chong

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Bryan Chong

02 September 2016

Not many people would have guessed that 23-year-old Bryan Chong, a strapping young man in his final year at Nanyang Technological University (NTU), was a victim of bullying in primary and secondary schools as he was the only student with profound hearing loss in class. Today an Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation scholar, Bryan shares the challenges he faced growing up with a hearing impairment and how overcoming them shaped his outlook in life.

Tips on Making Walking an Interesting Activity

Tips on Making Walking an Interesting Activity

02 September 2016

Being active is an important part of everyone’s life. Walking is a low-impact aerobic exercise and one of the easiest and most effective exercises anyone can do. It improves physical health and well-being and is simple to do. Our physiotherapist Winson Teng shares some tips on how to make walking enjoyable.

Letter on Catering to the Transport Needs of Different Disability Groups

Letter on Catering to the Transport Needs of Different Disability Groups

19 August 2016

The Public Transport Council (PTC) released on 1 August 2016 a raft of recommendations on how buses and trains can be made friendlier for families, seniors and wheelchair users. Some of the biggest concerns from commuters included crowding on public transport and stations, and issues of reliability and accessibility. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares his views in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 6 August 2016, on how transport accessibility is essential in creating a more inclusive environment for people with disabilities.

Riding Safely on Your Personal Mobility Device

Riding Safely on Your Personal Mobility Device

19 August 2016

A personal mobility device (PMD) allows its user to have greater independence and increased mobility and even speed within the community. It is no wonder then that there has been an increase in demand for these devices, which include powered scooters and wheelchairs. SPD physiotherapist Nadiah Binte Muhamed Amin advises on the safe and proper use of these mobility devices.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Soh Whee Lian

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Soh Whee Lian

19 August 2016

Brows slightly creased and with steady unwavering hands, he snips away at her hair, half a centimetre at a time. His look of concentration, like that of an artist working with intent, is in direct contrast to the playful smile Jin Leng displays, obviously enjoying the haircut she is receiving. 40-year-old Soh Whee Lian is a wheelchair user who is giving back to society with his hairstyling skills.

Volunteers Help SPD Clients Stay Active

Volunteers Help SPD Clients Stay Active

05 August 2016

Volunteers from all walks of life organised activities this past few weeks to keep our clients engaged and active.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Noraini Binte Hamid

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Noraini Binte Hamid

05 August 2016

Noraini has mobility difficulties but she does not see herself as one who needs care. She is independent and sees herself as a contributing member of her family.

Harnessing Technology for Greater Inclusion

Harnessing Technology for Greater Inclusion

05 August 2016

SPD's Advocacy & Public Education team has been zipping across the island to spread the message of inclusion, and sharing with tech savvy youths how their expertise can help create a more inclusive environment for people with disabilities.

Inaugural Technology Forum Raises Awareness on Positive Impact of Technology on People with Disabilities

Inaugural Technology Forum Raises Awareness on Positive Impact of Technology on People with Disabilities

22 July 2016

The inaugural E2 Connect 2016 forum was held at the Enabling Village on 21 and 22 July. The two-day forum involved industry experts and representatives from the disability care sector who came together to raise awareness of the positive impact of technology on people with disabilities, and of opportunities in terms of education, training and independent learning.

Thank You Caroline for the Gift of Voice

Thank You Caroline for the Gift of Voice

22 July 2016

Caroline Matheussen joined SPD as a volunteer in February 2014, helping to cultivate good reading habits in the young children supported by SPD’s early intervention programme. A month later, she stepped up to help in getting Specialised Assistive Technology Centre client Yong Seng Koon, a young man who is unable to speak, to use Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) to communicate. Seng Koon has come a long way since pairing up with Caroline and today can read and write simple sentences. 

Strengthen Transition Support for Kids with Special Needs

Strengthen Transition Support for Kids with Special Needs

22 July 2016

Parents of children with special needs may not always have the knowledge or time to research the options and assistance available for their children and how to go about getting them. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares in this letter, published in The Straits Times Forum on 11 July 2016, how a road map that allows parents to navigate the special needs education system would assure them of their children’s development.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Goh Kee Choon: “Heng ah! I’m still alive!”

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Goh Kee Choon: “Heng ah! I’m still alive!”

08 July 2016

Mr Goh Kee Choon is a familiar figure in SPD. He is a social worker, an avid photographer and a person of ability with a disability. SPD’s advocacy senior analyst, Poh Sho Siam, shares his story.

Conversation with Social Work Associate Ishak Johari

Conversation with Social Work Associate Ishak Johari

08 July 2016

Social work associate Ishak Johari has only been with SPD for less than a year and already has a heart thumping story to share – one that involves dissuading a stranger from jumping off the building. We caught up with Ishak to find out more about his journey to impacting more lives.

SPD is Singapore’s First Outpatient Medical Rehabilitation Centre for Children and Adults to Receive CARF Accreditation

SPD is Singapore’s First Outpatient Medical Rehabilitation Centre for Children and Adults to Receive CARF Accreditation

08 July 2016

We have been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) International for a period of three years for the Continuing Therapy Programme (CTP) and SPD Rehabilitation Centres. This is the first time any local community-based outpatient rehabilitation programme for children and adults in Singapore have been accredited by CARF International.

Veteran Mountaineer David Lim Scales 6,000m Peak in Nepal

Veteran Mountaineer David Lim Scales 6,000m Peak in Nepal

24 June 2016

SPD’s flag once again fluttered in the cold winds atop one of the highest points on earth as veteran mountaineer David Lim flew it when he made an ascent of a 6,000-metre high peak in Nepal on 22 May.

Celebrating Fathers’ Day

Celebrating Fathers’ Day

24 June 2016

Fathers’ Day was celebrated last Sunday and we would like to share stories of two fathers who are exemplary in their caregiving role raising their children who have special needs.

Count Me In to Walk the Talk

Count Me In to Walk the Talk

24 June 2016

We have some fun and meaningful events coming up to help generate greater disability awareness and raise funds for our cause. We hope to have your support.

June Break Activities

June Break Activities

10 June 2016

It’s the June holidays and we check out some of the activities organised for our younger clients so far!

Reaching Out to the Community

Reaching Out to the Community

10 June 2016

As part of our work to integrate people with disabilities into mainstream society, we also focus on advocating greater acceptance at the workplace, in school and the community at large.

SPD Welcomes Mr Yeo Teck Guan to the Fundraising Committee

SPD Welcomes Mr Yeo Teck Guan to the Fundraising Committee

10 June 2016

We extend a warm welcome to Mr Yeo Teck Guan who joined us on 30 May 2016 as an SPD member and Fundraising Committee Member.

Letter on the Importance of Inclusive Interaction at an Early Age

Letter on the Importance of Inclusive Interaction at an Early Age

10 June 2016

Even as disability organisations roll out public education campaigns and events to promote inclusion, recent findings from several surveys showed that Singapore is still not as inclusive a society as we would like it to be. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shared his view on why inclusive interaction needs to start from our young and how such a setting would benefit our society as a whole in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 4 June 2016.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Ng Mei Ching

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Ng Mei Ching

27 May 2016

41-year-old Ng Mei Ching was working in a global financial services company as an assistant vice-president when a motor vehicle incident in 2011 robbed her of her motor functions from the chest down. Initially reliant on her caregiver for all her activities of daily living, the soft-spoken mother of two enrolled in SPD’s Transitional Programme for Employment (TPE) in September 2014 with the goal of getting back to work and becoming physically stronger to care for her two young children.

Furry Friends Delight the Elderly at SPD@Toa Payoh

Furry Friends Delight the Elderly at SPD@Toa Payoh

27 May 2016

The interaction with gentle and friendly pets is said to improve physical health, encourage communication and promote good mental health. We were therefore delighted to have volunteers from Mutts & Mittens lead their pack for pet therapy with 20 elderly clients at SPD@Toa Payoh on 8 April and 13 May.

Experiential Learning from Outside the Classroom

Experiential Learning from Outside the Classroom

27 May 2016

Teachers from the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre lined up several experiential learning activities outside of the classroom the past two months. We take a look at all the fun learning the children had.

A Musical Treat for All at SPD

A Musical Treat for All at SPD

13 May 2016

Clients of SPD were treated to a rousing performance of English, Mandarin and Malay favourites by musicians from the Singapore Chinese Orchestra (SCO) who performed at SPD on 11 May as part of the SCO Caring Series 2016 sponsored by Tan Chin Tuan Foundation.

Conversation with Senior Workshop Supervisor Tan Lee Huan

Conversation with Senior Workshop Supervisor Tan Lee Huan

13 May 2016

Always with a ready smile, Tan Lee Huan is a senior workshop supervisor at SPD’s Sheltered Workshop, which offers supported employment and vocational training for people with disabilities, largely seeking sub-contract work such as packing, letter-shopping and product tagging the trainees can engage in. She has been with the SPD family for almost 14 years, having joined in September 2002. We catch up with Lee Huan to find out more about her work at SPD.

Coming Together for Organisational Excellence

Coming Together for Organisational Excellence

13 May 2016

It was get-together time as everyone from SPD’s centres all over Singapore gathered at the SPD Ability Centre on 29 April for the annual Organisational Excellence Day.

 

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Fang Zhi’s Invisible Disability

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together – Fang Zhi’s Invisible Disability

29 April 2016

All parties play a part in enabling a child with special needs - the system, parents, the public, as well as the child himself. When one is willing to give the child an opportunity and to accept the child, he is making a difference in the child’s life.

Letter on Promoting Inclusive Outdoor Education

Letter on Promoting Inclusive Outdoor Education

29 April 2016

Acting Education Minister (Schools) Mr Ng Chee Meng recently announced in Parliament that, as part of the National Outdoor Adventure Education Masterplan, all students will get to participate in three cohort camps during their school years. The move is aimed at increasing our students’ exposure to the outdoors and developing attributes such as ruggedness and resilience. Believing that students with disabilities should have equal opportunities to be a part of this experiential learning, SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 22 April the importance of including students with disabilities in the outdoor activities.

 

SPD Conducts Disability Awareness Training for Tower Transit Bus Captains

SPD Conducts Disability Awareness Training for Tower Transit Bus Captains

29 April 2016

Looking to create a better experience for their commuters, Singapore’s third local bus operator Tower Transit invited SPD to conduct a disability awareness workshop for their bus captains on 27 April. The workshop provided the bus captains with knowledge and understanding of people with disabilities, as well as etiquette and skills in helping them.

Inaugural SPD Charity Golf Raises $240,000 Thanks to Strong Support from Corporate Partners

Inaugural SPD Charity Golf Raises $240,000 Thanks to Strong Support from Corporate Partners

29 April 2016

The inaugural SPD Charity Golf, held at the Raffles Country Club on 22 April, saw close to 30 companies coming together to raise more than $240,000 through sponsorship of golf flights and donations. Guest-of-Honour, Minister for Manpower and Member of Parliament for East Coast GRC, Mr Lim Swee Say, led the tee-off with 106 golfers in the 27-flight event.

SPD Welcomes Ms Ong Toon Hui to the Board of Management

SPD Welcomes Ms Ong Toon Hui to the Board of Management

15 April 2016

We extend a warm welcome to Ms Ong Toon Hui who joined SPD’s Board of Management on 14 March 2016. Ms Ong is the Dean and Chief Executive Officer of Civil Service College Singapore and concurrently Deputy Secretary (Development) in the Public Service Division of the Prime Minister’s Office.

Thank You Everyone for Making the SPD Flag Day 2016 a Success!

Thank You Everyone for Making the SPD Flag Day 2016 a Success!

15 April 2016

45-year-old Tan Li Li, a wheelchair user who has polio, has been a craftsman at SPD’s Sheltered Workshop since 1999. She joined the other craftsmen with disabilities from the Sheltered Workshop last Saturday to do their bit to raise funds for SPD through the SPD Flag Day. The generosity of passers-by at Jurong East MRT station kept Li Li going and she was happy when she handed in four filled-up donation tins at the end of the day.

Caring for Our Caregivers

Caring for Our Caregivers

15 April 2016

According to studies, many with caregiving responsibilities have two or more chronic diseases. Therefore, to relieve caregivers of their usual caregiving duties and help release pent-up tension and stress, SPD’s social workers organised the Caregivers Wellness Day on 1 April. More than 20 caregivers and clients attended the event held at the Central Singapore Community Development Council (CS CDC) in Toa Payoh. 

Letter on Ensuring Streamlined Support for Children with Special Needs

Letter on Ensuring Streamlined Support for Children with Special Needs

01 April 2016

Early intervention can make a difference to a child’s development, resulting in better outcomes for children with special needs, including better social and daily living skills. In a letter published in Today’s Voices on 17 March, SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal, took the opportunity to share some of the early intervention programmes available.

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together - Overee Stephanie Fawcet

Celebrating Life’s Every Triumph Together - Overee Stephanie Fawcet

01 April 2016

She got into position beside her duet partner and locked the brakes on her wheelchair. She readied herself as the training officers put the portable microphone on her.  It was the moment that she had been training for over the past few months. The introductory music came on and as it hit the 20-second mark, she sang out the first words of Celine Dion’s ‘My Heart Will Go On’.  She had a slight smile on her face as she paused for her next line. She knew she would do well for the song. And she did.

Plan for Long-Term Care for Those with Disabilities

Plan for Long-Term Care for Those with Disabilities

18 March 2016

A topic that is generally hard to broach but always on the minds of caregivers of people with disabilities is what happens to their loved-ones when the caregiver is no longer able to care for them. SPD’s director for inclusion advancement Joyce Wong promotes the need for permanency planning in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 15 March.

TPE Clients Go Sailing on Wheelchair-Accessible Sailboat

TPE Clients Go Sailing on Wheelchair-Accessible Sailboat

18 March 2016

The DBS Marina Sailing Programme was launched in 2013 to provide the community an opportunity to get into the Marina Reservoir and enjoy the view of the bay from a different perspective. We are delighted to be one of the community partners chosen to participate in this year’s programme.

Celebrating Social Workers’ Day

Celebrating Social Workers’ Day

18 March 2016

In line with the Singapore Association of Social Workers’ (SASW) 10th anniversary, the social workers from SPD’s Community & Social Support Department (CSSD) adopted the theme ‘Honouring Diversity’ in the games and presentations they organised this year for SPD’s clients and staff, to promote better understanding of their profession. The event was light-hearted yet educational as the social workers explained their profession at information booths set up at SPD Ability Centre on 16 March.

Games and Toys for Inclusive Play

Games and Toys for Inclusive Play

18 March 2016

Children learn through play, try out new skills, bond with others and also in the process, have their imagination piqued. To enable children with special needs to play, mainstream games and toys have been adapted and modified. Here, senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam shows us some of these modified games. 

Farewell to Our Soka Volunteers

Farewell to Our Soka Volunteers

04 March 2016

The farewell between Soka volunteer Lay Keow and stroke survivor Vivian started with smiles and encouraging handshakes. But as reality set in and a few touching words of appreciation later, the two shared a tearful embrace, one that epitomised the bond developed between the volunteers and the SPD Day Activity Centre (DAC) clients over the past 11 years.

Creating Awareness for Tourette’s Syndrome

Creating Awareness for Tourette’s Syndrome

04 March 2016

Josiah Ong is a recipient of the Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities and a business administration undergraduate at National University of Singapore (NUS), who has Tourette’s Syndrome. He gave a talk at his school’s disability support office recently to raise the awareness of Tourette’s Syndrome.

A QaneMate to Bind Generations

A QaneMate to Bind Generations

04 March 2016

SPD’s Rehabilitation Centre is the proud recipient of 12 QaneMates and walking canes on 25 February. The QaneMate is a portable walking cane holder designed to keep the cane in an upright position when the user is not holding onto it. It is the brainchild of 12-year-old Seng Ian Hao and 10-year old sister Seng Ing Le.

Greater Awareness  of Rare Conditions

Greater Awareness of Rare Conditions

04 March 2016

Rare Disease Day was started in 2008 and takes place on the last day of February each year. It is celebrated internationally with the aim of raising awareness about rare diseases, as well as their impact on the lives of people diagnosed with them. Here, four of SPD’s clients and their families come forward to share their stories to raise awareness of the various conditions.

Japanese Welfare Foundation Makes Work Safer and More Efficient for Sheltered Workshop Trainees

Japanese Welfare Foundation Makes Work Safer and More Efficient for Sheltered Workshop Trainees

19 February 2016

Simple modifications and improvements to a working environment can help people with disabilities develop their potential for employment. With that in mind, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Welfare Foundation generously donated $10,000 for the purchase of wheelchairs, plastic pallets, cage trolleys and storage cartons for SPD’s Sheltered Workshop to help its trainees go about their work better.

Art and Rehabilitation

Art and Rehabilitation

19 February 2016

Art can be empowering and therapeutic for many, and we discovered recently that a handful of our clients under the Transition Programme for Employment (TPE) have also incorporated art in their rehabilitation journey. Here are their stories and art pieces.

Labelling Hurts Individuals with Special Needs

Labelling Hurts Individuals with Special Needs

19 February 2016

Many times we go about our day subconsciously putting labels on people whom we come across - who they are, how they look and how they behave. Many people with special needs often face such labelling when in public. Senior Early Intervention Programme (EIPIC) teacher Arnold Chua shares his thoughts on this.

Get to Know Our SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2016 Winners

Get to Know Our SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2016 Winners

05 February 2016

The SPD Youth Aspiration Award is administered by SPD and sponsored by NatSteel Holdings Pte Ltd. The award comes with a $5,000 grant that allows youths with physical disabilities to develop their interests and talents in the areas of visual and performing arts, sports and community service. This year, four youths with disabilities were presented with the award last month at the SPD Education Awards Presentation Ceremony 2016. Let’s meet the recipients.

 

Our Kids in the Big, Big World

Our Kids in the Big, Big World

05 February 2016

Teachers from the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre organised a field trip to the supermarket to give the children a chance to apply what they had learnt in the classroom to daily activities. Accompanied by their teachers and five caregivers, the 11 students made their way to the bustling Jurong East using public transport on 28 January.

Recognising Our Long Service Volunteers

Recognising Our Long Service Volunteers

05 February 2016

SPD’s Board members are volunteers who are professionals in their own fields and who take time off from their busy schedules to contribute their professional expertise to ensure that SPD is run in an honest, efficient and forward-thinking manner. Three of them were recently presented with the Long Service Award for Voluntary Welfare Organisation volunteers from the National Council of Social Service.

Letter on Urging More Social Workers to Join Disability Sector

Letter on Urging More Social Workers to Join Disability Sector

05 February 2016

Director for SPD’s Inclusion Advancement division, Joyce Wong, who started out as a social worker, shares in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 3 February the many hats that social workers in the disability sector wear while rehabilitating people with disabilities back into mainstream society.

ASEAN Para Games Medallists Join Youths with Disabilities in Getting Education and Talent Development Support

ASEAN Para Games Medallists Join Youths with Disabilities in Getting Education and Talent Development Support

29 January 2016

The SPD Education Programme Awards Presentation Ceremony 2016 was held at The Chevrons on 23 January. We invited Ms Grace Fu, Minister for Culture, Community and Youth as the Guest-of-Honour. She presented bursaries to 84 students and the SPD Youth Aspiration Award to four youths.

SPD Starts the Year with Motivated Staffers

SPD Starts the Year with Motivated Staffers

22 January 2016

SPD started the year on a high as close to 300 staff from all SPD’s centres gathered for a day of fellowship on 15 January. The annual Staff Day kicked off in the morning with staff from different departments working in teams to complete a series of games and tasks. A staff appreciation dinner was held that same night to recognise achievements and contributions throughout the year.

 

Celebrating Occupational Therapy

Celebrating Occupational Therapy

22 January 2016

The SPD OT Day 2016 committee came up with a series of activities to raise awareness and educate the staff on what the profession encompasses. Quizzes and poster presentations were rolled out from as early as October last year. It all culminated in a day of learning through fun activities at the various SPD centres in January 2016.

LTA Helps SPD Clients Familiarise with the New Downtown Line

LTA Helps SPD Clients Familiarise with the New Downtown Line

22 January 2016

A group of clients and trainees from the SPD Sheltered Workshop and Employment Support Programme went on a familiarisation tour of the new Downtown Line 2 (DTL 2) that was led by staff from the Land Transport Authority (LTA) on 29 December. They were introduced to the various barrier-free features of DTL2 and the major interchange stations. The initiative aimed at giving them greater confidence to commute using the public trains for social, employment and other purposes.

Students with Disabilities Can Do Well with Inclusive Education Network

Students with Disabilities Can Do Well with Inclusive Education Network

22 January 2016

In this letter published in Today’s Voices on 21 January 2016, SPD’s executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares how inclusive education can help to realise the potential of students with disabilities, and how we can play a part in creating such an ecosystem.

 

A Season of Fun and Giving

A Season of Fun and Giving

08 January 2016

Everyone looks forward to the year-end celebrations and ending the year on a high note. We’ve had the privilege to do so, thanks to volunteers and partners who came up with different ways to spread the joy of the season with our clients.
 
Support Our Upcoming Events

Support Our Upcoming Events

08 January 2016

We are looking forward to the annual SPD Charity Hongbao and our very first charity golf tournament!
SPD Helping More People with Disabilities Secure Jobs

SPD Helping More People with Disabilities Secure Jobs

08 January 2016

More resources and funding provided by the Government in the last two years, along with employers being more willing and open to accept people with special needs in their workforce, has enabled SPD to help more persons with disabilities find open employment.

Saying A Big Thank You to Our Volunteers

Saying A Big Thank You to Our Volunteers

24 December 2015

Close to 130 SPD volunteers were invited to attend an exclusive screening of ‘The Peanuts Movie’ and a reception on 12 December at the Cathay Cineleisure Orchard. The event was organised in celebration and recognition of the volunteers’ gift of time and effort in the year which have enriched the lives of many clients of SPD.

Nature Plays Guide for the Day

Nature Plays Guide for the Day

24 December 2015

For 18 Sheltered Workshop trainees, caregivers, volunteers and staff, the rustic outdoors of Pulau Ubin was transformed into a learning laboratory and Mother Nature became their guide on their recent trip to the eastern island.

Volunteers Run Hearing Tests for SPD Clients

Volunteers Run Hearing Tests for SPD Clients

24 December 2015

The ability to hear enables us to interact and communicate with others effectively, and good hearing also alerts us to potential dangers and keeps us safe. Having our clients’ wellness in mind, consultants from The Hearing Solution Group set up hearing tests and hearing device fittings for 23 clients at SPD Ability Centre on 11 December.

Singapore Ranked 34th in the World in Giving

Singapore Ranked 34th in the World in Giving

24 December 2015

The World Giving Index Report is an annual report, published by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) in the United Kingdom since 2010, which gives insights to global generosity and charitable behaviour by measuring giving in three ways. Senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam tells us how Singapore fares.

Taking Care of Our Children’s Vision and Dental Health

Taking Care of Our Children’s Vision and Dental Health

11 December 2015

Studies have shown that children with special needs tend to have their first dental or eye checks later than their able-bodied peers. This could be due to difficulties in finding paediatric specialists who are trained to treat children with special needs. With that in mind, SPD collaborated with Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s optometry students and two volunteer dentists to provide vision screening and a talk on oral health to the young EIPIC clients and their caregivers.

SPD@Jurong Hosted Counterparts from Macau

SPD@Jurong Hosted Counterparts from Macau

11 December 2015

Staff at SPD@Jurong hosted guests from Macau’s Kai Chi Early Learning and Development Centre who were on a study trip to Singapore.

SPD’s Employment Support and Assistive Technology Services are now at Enabling Village

SPD’s Employment Support and Assistive Technology Services are now at Enabling Village

11 December 2015

The Enabling Village is a new $25 million community facility in Red Hill that was launched by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on 2 December. Two SPD programmes have been relocated there to provide ease and convenience for people with disabilities at this one-stop centre. 

Year-End Concerts and Graduations

Year-End Concerts and Graduations

11 December 2015

It's the end of the year and two groups in SPD have spent months ahead preparing for their annual concerts and graduation performances.

Dressing in Style for Persons with Disabilities

Dressing in Style for Persons with Disabilities

27 November 2015

Dressing well is important to many of us, no matter the event or venue of the occasion. Dressing well can be rewarding but it can be challenging for people with disabilities as they may encounter difficulty finding clothes that are both fashionable and easy to wear. Senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam shares with us the different types of accessible clothing which not only looks good but offers comfort to the wearer as well.

History in the Making – 8th ASEAN Para Games

History in the Making – 8th ASEAN Para Games

27 November 2015

2015 has been a significant year for Singapore, having celebrated our 50th birthday and hosting the 28th South East Asian Games (SEA Games). Bookending the year will come another milestone when Singapore hosts our first ASEAN Para Games from 3 to 9 December.

Only the Season’s Best for Everyone

Only the Season’s Best for Everyone

27 November 2015

With the festive season soon upon us, it is our pleasure to present you with the SPD Season’s Best Collection 2015/2016, a traditional and sincere way to show appreciation to your friends, family, customers and associates at the year’s end.

Don't Let Black Sheep Deter Charity Donors

Don't Let Black Sheep Deter Charity Donors

27 November 2015

In this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 13 November 2015, SPD’s executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal urges the public not to stop giving despite recent news reports of poorly managed charities, and calls for greater support for the development of good corporate capabilities in VWOs.

A Holistic Learning for the Children in October

A Holistic Learning for the Children in October

13 November 2015

A holistic approach to learning allows children to develop and pick up different life skills more quickly. This is why teachers from our Building Bridges EIPIC Centre do their best to design curriculum and lesson plans that include not only knowledge acquisition in the classroom but also experiential learning.

SPD Supports SMU in its Disability Awareness Efforts

SPD Supports SMU in its Disability Awareness Efforts

13 November 2015

In an increasingly diversified world, it has become necessary to embrace new perspectives and engage people with different abilities, something the Singapore Management University (SMU) believes in and has been working on with SPD.

Sweets for the Sweet!

Sweets for the Sweet!

13 November 2015

A lolli never fails to bring a smile to anyone, young or old, and can be used to brighten up someone’s life. SPD aims to have the lollis do just that with the “Have a Sweet Day” campaign taking place at 60 participating organisations around the island from 16 November to 31 December 2015. 

SPD Turns Purple for Inclusion

SPD Turns Purple for Inclusion

13 November 2015

The annual Purple Parade, this year held on 31 October at Hong Lim Park, is the collective effort of the social service sector and its partners coming together to spread the message of inclusion, and a reminder to us all that the rights of people with special needs should not be forgotten. More than 50 staff and clients from SPD’s Day Activity Centre and Sheltered Workshop lent their voices to the cause by joining 7,000 others at the parade.  

Making Health and Safety a Priority for All

Making Health and Safety a Priority for All

30 October 2015

SPD staff gathered at our headquarters at the SPD Ability Centre on 23 October for the annual Health and Safety Preparedness Day to learn about keeping our centres safe for all including staff, clients, caregivers, volunteers and contactors.

Youth Receives Model Young Caregiver Award

Youth Receives Model Young Caregiver Award

30 October 2015

Taking on the role of a caregiver can be rewarding and challenging at the same time. It takes strength and a loving heart to provide physical support and emotional encouragement round the clock. 21-year-old Seraphina Tan is an individual with such a big heart. She is her elder sister’s main caregiver ever since a traffic accident five years ago left the latter paralysed from the waist down.

A Giant Among Giants

A Giant Among Giants

30 October 2015

Our heartiest congratulations to our Board member Prof Ho Lai Yun on receiving the MSF Outstanding Volunteer Award 2015!

Spreading the Message of Inclusion

Spreading the Message of Inclusion

30 October 2015

Social acceptance is crucial in integrating persons with disabilities into the society. Raising awareness through public education aimed at different strata of society has to be an on-going process. Doing so at educational institutions lays the foundation for greater acceptance of people with disabilities among the next generation.

Volunteers Met Over a Meal in Complete Darkness

Volunteers Met Over a Meal in Complete Darkness

16 October 2015

Freedom Adventure Club volunteers attended a unique dining experience at “Lunch in the Dark” on 10 October. Organised by SPD to bond the FAC volunteers who come from different walks of life and establish a meaningful relationship, the activity also aimed to raise awareness towards visual impairment among the volunteers.

A Counsellor’s Role in Helping Clients Go Through Different Stages of Change

A Counsellor’s Role in Helping Clients Go Through Different Stages of Change

16 October 2015

Ruth Lim is a senior social worker at SPD who counsels and provides social support to people with disabilities at the sheltered workshop. With many years in the social service sector, Ruth has worked with many clients and has seen her charges deal differently with changes happening in their lives. She shares with UPDATES the different stages of change and what a counsellor can do at every stage to help the client cope with these changes.

SPD at the National Occupational Therapy Conference 2015

SPD at the National Occupational Therapy Conference 2015

16 October 2015

SPD's Executive Director, Mr Abhimanyau Pal, and several occupational therapists from SPD participated and shared their experience and knowledge through various engagements during the annual National Occupational Therapy Conference that took place on 10 October.

Meet our Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Scholars

Meet our Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Scholars

16 October 2015

Three young Singaporeans overcame the challenges from disabling conditions and having to deal with bullying, taunting and even a life threatening situation to excel in their studies. They were presented with the Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities in a ceremony held at the SPD Ability Centre on 14 October.

Learning to Save a Life

Learning to Save a Life

02 October 2015

The recent Volunteers Networking Session saw SPD’s volunteers invited to a workshop to learn about basic life-saving procedures and protocols, as well as how to perform CPR and use the AED.

Sweet September

Sweet September

02 October 2015

With two organisations serving sweet treats to the clients, caregivers and staff of SPD, September was sweet indeed for us!

KOCHAM 8th Charity Golf & Dinner

KOCHAM 8th Charity Golf & Dinner

02 October 2015

The Korean Chamber of Commerce (KOCHAM) held its 8th Charity Golf & Dinner at the Singapore Island Country Club on 22 September. The charity fundraiser, co-hosted by KOCHAM and the Embassy of the Republic of Korean in Singapore, is a symbol of co-operation between the business communities of Singapore and Korea.

To the German Community in Singapore, We Say Danke!

To the German Community in Singapore, We Say Danke!

02 October 2015

The Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany His Excellency Dr Michael Witter and Mrs Johanna Witter hosted the Race Car Live Painting and Auction event for members of the German community in Singapore and other guests at His Excellency’s residence on 21 September 2015.

Record Number of Recipients for the Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship This Year

Record Number of Recipients for the Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship This Year

18 September 2015

A record number of five scholarships was awarded to outstanding young Singaporeans with disabilities at the Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship Awards Ceremony 2015, up from the four scholarships disbursed annually in previous years. 

StarHub Renews Commitment to Empower People with Disabilities Through SPD

StarHub Renews Commitment to Empower People with Disabilities Through SPD

18 September 2015

StarHub has reaffirmed its support of SPD’s Infocomm Accessibility Centre Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS), an office skills training programme that enables people with disabilities to find open, gainful employment in administrative positions.

Korean Delegates Visit SPD

Korean Delegates Visit SPD

18 September 2015

We were proud to have hosted the Korean Ambassador to Singapore, His Excellency Mr Suh Chung Ha, and representatives from the Korean Chamber of Commerce in Singapore on the afternoon of 15 September 2015. They were here to understand more about our programmes and services.

The Importance of Play

The Importance of Play

18 September 2015

Play constitutes a major part of a child's life and is instrumental to their social, emotional, intellectual and physical development. Senior teacher in SPD’s Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC) Arnold Chua shares about the positive impact of play on children in this letter published in The Straits Times Forum on 11 September.

Celebrating World Physical Therapy Day 2015

Celebrating World Physical Therapy Day 2015

18 September 2015

World Physical Therapy Day falls on 8 September every year, and is an opportunity for physiotherapists from all over the world to raise awareness about the crucial contribution their profession makes in keeping people well, mobile and independent. With that in mind, SPD’s physiotherapists marked the day on 10 September by organising games that tested our physical abilities. It was a great bonding session for the staff as they took time off to support this activity.

SPD Holds 51st Annual General Meeting

SPD Holds 51st Annual General Meeting

04 September 2015

SPD’s 51st Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on 29 August 2015 at the SPD Ability Centre.

There is an Artist in Every Child

There is an Artist in Every Child

04 September 2015

EIPIC teacher Gerry Da shares in this article how a simple activity like using handprints to create art can have immensely positive effects on children.

Evolution of Prosthesis Devices

Evolution of Prosthesis Devices

04 September 2015

The use of prosthesis, i.e. an artificial substitute or replacement of a part of the body, such as a leg or an arm, has helped many who lost their limbs regain mobility, enabling them to travel, work and perform other activities of daily living. Our senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam throws light on a sophisticated prosthetic device used today that has a primitive beginning.

SPD Gives Back to the Community

SPD Gives Back to the Community

04 September 2015

Our organisational excellence journey takes us to other voluntary welfare organisations this year, giving us the opportunity to give back to the community that has given to us so much, and reigniting much passion in our work.

Injuries in Runners

Injuries in Runners

21 August 2015

Although daily physical activities result in a number of well-documented health benefits, reaping such benefits comes at a risk of exercise-related injuries. We examine some common injuries that runners sustain. 

 

Finding Meaning in Life’s Journey

Finding Meaning in Life’s Journey

21 August 2015

Vania Teo is a case management officer with SPD’s Community and Social Service Department. She shares with us her reflections gathered in the course of her work on the meaning of life after acquiring a disability.

SPD Celebrates Singapore’s 50th Birthday

SPD Celebrates Singapore’s 50th Birthday

21 August 2015

Having just concluded marking SPD’s golden jubilee, our celebratory mood continued with the SG50 fever!

Donation to SPD Made Easier with DBS

Donation to SPD Made Easier with DBS

05 August 2015

SPD has been listed as one of the Bill Payment Organisations under the Charitable Organisations category for both DBS PayLah users (mobile app) and DBS ibanking customers.

Letter on Doing More to Create Employment Opportunities

Letter on Doing More to Create Employment Opportunities

05 August 2015

Employment of people with disabilities is an area that we advocate passionately about because financial independence is important in helping them to be self-reliant. We responded to a letter in The Straits Times Forum, calling for more support to create employment opportunities for people with disabilities. The letter was published on 27 July 2015.

Dolls that Defy Stereotypes

Dolls that Defy Stereotypes

05 August 2015

Play is an essential part of growing up as it ignites the imagination of children and allows them to try out new skills and develop interpersonal ones. Through toys, children learn to relate to things and ideals in the real world. In this article, SPD’s senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam talks about disability awareness toys and their benefits.

In Memory of Mr Koh Nai Teck, PBM

In Memory of Mr Koh Nai Teck, PBM

05 August 2015

We are saddened by the passing of our former President, Mr Koh Nai Teck, PBM, on 26 July 2015. Until illness rendered him unable to contribute in 2010, Mr Koh was tireless in his voluntary efforts. He will be dearly missed.

Volunteers Networking Session - Art-iculating Creativity

Volunteers Networking Session - Art-iculating Creativity

24 July 2015

Our volunteers often brighten up our clients’ days and leave a lasting impression on the canvas of their lives. This gave us the idea to organise an art workshop for our volunteers during our quarterly networking session on 1 July.

 

Learning Never to Quit Through Sports

Learning Never to Quit Through Sports

24 July 2015

In an atmosphere almost like a mini South-East Asian Games, more than 20 young clients from SPD’s Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC) and their caregivers gathered at the Radin Mas Community Club Multi-Purpose Hall on 27 June to participate in the annual EIPIC Sports Day.

Knowledge-Sharing to Advance the Disability Sector

Knowledge-Sharing to Advance the Disability Sector

24 July 2015

At SPD, we are guided by our vision and mission to integrate people with disabilities in all aspects of community living, be it in education, employment, physical and built environment or social interactions. When given the opportunity, we share our knowledge and spread the message of inclusion through community outreach and public education.

My Dream for a Truly Inclusive Society

My Dream for a Truly Inclusive Society

24 July 2015

Supported by the SG50 Celebration Fund, “Beyond 50: Re-Imagining Singapore” is an e-book compiled by Mr Joachim Sim featuring the insightful and imaginative ideas of Singapore thought leaders about Singapore’s future. We bring you the chapter contributed by Ms Chia Yong Yong, President of SPD, in which she shares her hopes for an inclusive Singapore through various life stories.

 

SPD Retail News

SPD Retail News

10 July 2015

SPD will be in the retail map in the upcoming months! Check out our latest leather bookmarks, notebooks and photo frames, all handcrafted by our craftsmen from the SPD Sheltered Workshop and available at Thousand Lattice at Far East Plaza. A Uniqlo Street Tales t-shirt designed by our SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2015 recipient Mohammed Diroy is also available at Uniqlo Bugis+. While you are out, look out for our volunteers as they take to the streets with trays of “Have A Sweet Day” lollipops to brighten up your day!

Getting Our Wheels to Pulau Ubin

Getting Our Wheels to Pulau Ubin

10 July 2015

Believing that no part of the country should be inaccessible to any Singaporean, two friends started Wheels@Ubin, a community and SG50 project aimed at helping wheelchair users cross the seas to enjoy the unique culture of Pulau Ubin. This vision was realised on 26 June when 100 wheelchair users, including a group from SPD, arrived at the island with some help from the Republic of Singapore Navy, SMRT taxis and many supporters and volunteers. 

SPD Hosts Diplomats from Malaysia and Germany

SPD Hosts Diplomats from Malaysia and Germany

10 July 2015

We were privileged to have had the opportunity to host visitors from Malaysia and Germany at SPD Ability Centre in June. The two visits were as enriching for us as hosts as we gained knowledge, experiences and best practices which would go towards greater inclusion and better support for the disabled community.

SPD@Jurong Introduces Aqua Therapy

SPD@Jurong Introduces Aqua Therapy

10 July 2015

SPD@Jurong introduced the first Aqua Therapy programme on 25 May for children with physical disabilities enrolled in the Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC). Three young clients, accompanied by their caregivers, took their first plunge into the pool and kicked start their 30-minute aqua therapy session conducted by our physiotherapists and an EIPIC teacher.

Persons with Disabilities in Extreme or Action Sports

Persons with Disabilities in Extreme or Action Sports

26 June 2015

Being a wheelchair-user or having a disability did not stop these sportsmen and women from participating in extreme or action sports. Through their adventures, they hope to encourage others with disabilities. SPD’s senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam brings us their stories.

A Career Switch that Made Life More Meaningful

A Career Switch that Made Life More Meaningful

26 June 2015

Jacky Goh is a physiotherapist at SPD, but unlike many of his peers, he did not start out in his career as one. Inspired to be one after a personal experience, Jacky decided on a mid-career switch and joined the Singapore Workforce Development Agency’s (WDA) Professional Conversion Programme (PCP). We had a chat with him during one of his breaks at the SPD Rehabilitation Centre to find out why he chose this career path.

SPD President at the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

SPD President at the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

26 June 2015

SPD President Ms Chia Yong Yong, was at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City in the week of 8 June to attend the 8th session of the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

A Weekend Under the Sun

A Weekend Under the Sun

12 June 2015

On the weekend of 30 and 31 May, SPD's representatives were at the DBS Marina Regatta's community event 'Paddle for Good', and then at the community parade/2.5km brisk walk, led by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, between the Marina Bay Floating Platform and Jubilee Bridge as part of the 'CDCs Celebrating Communities' event.

 

Catching Up with… SPD’s SEA Games Pride, Christine Chia

Catching Up with… SPD’s SEA Games Pride, Christine Chia

12 June 2015

The South East Asian (SEA) Games returns to Singapore after 22 years. The timing is especially significant given the nation's golden jubilee celebrations this year as well. It would be triple the excitement for SPD occupational therapist Christine Chia who canoes on the national quad. We caught up with the cheerful 23-year-old for a quick chat on her journey thus far.

EIPIC Children’s Play Dates at SPD

EIPIC Children’s Play Dates at SPD

12 June 2015

SPD arranged play dates for children from the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre earlier this week as part of the June holiday’s activities and the children had an interesting afternoon with their newfound friends - canines from Therapy Dogs Singapore (TDS).

Foot Care for People with Diabetes

Foot Care for People with Diabetes

29 May 2015

According to the Diabetic Society of Singapore, one in nine people aged 18 to 69 in Singapore has diabetes. One of the dangers people with diabetes face is the risk of amputation of the lower limbs due to lack of foot care. SPD physiotherapist Winson Teng shares with UPDATES what people with diabetes can do to mitigate foot complications. 

Engineering for Greater Good

Engineering for Greater Good

29 May 2015

The notion that engineers, with their technical skills, can help vulnerable communities resolve daily challenges had resulted in the inception of Project Make Possible by a group of like-minded individuals from the National University of Singapore. Project Make Possible helps bridge engineering undergraduates to these communities through a series of events such as a humanitarian engineering talk and workshops to expose the students to humanitarian engineering projects.
Sports Inclusion for Persons with Disabilities

Sports Inclusion for Persons with Disabilities

29 May 2015

With the SEA Games round the corner and the 8th ASEAN Para Games 2015 slated for later this year, SPD social worker Benjamin Han tells UPDATES that sports is not just for able-bodied individuals. In fact, sports has its role in integrating persons with disabilities into society.

SPD Beneficiaries Perform at Beautiful Mind Music Academy’s Concert

SPD Beneficiaries Perform at Beautiful Mind Music Academy’s Concert

15 May 2015

SPD’s beneficiaries Teo Pei Shan and Samuel Lim were among the young performers at the Beautiful Mind Music Academy’s (BMMA) inaugural concert staged at the Korean Church in Singapore on 9 May.

New Inclusive Playground Caters to Children with Special Needs

New Inclusive Playground Caters to Children with Special Needs

15 May 2015

Many of our fondest childhood memories are formed whilst at play. And very often, a playground would be part of these memories. Children with special needs may not have such luxury as they are usually watching from the side. Children using wheelchairs would never imagine they could ever go onto a swing – until now.

Catching Up with... Gregory Ong, SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2015 Recipient

Catching Up with... Gregory Ong, SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2015 Recipient

15 May 2015

We caught up with SPD Aspiration Award 2015 winner Gregory Ong, a handcyclist who is training rigorously in the hopes of being selected to represent Singapore at the Paralympics one day. We got to witness first hand and find out more about his training regime at one of his sessions.

Lesser Known Facts about the Community of People with Disabilities

Lesser Known Facts about the Community of People with Disabilities

30 April 2015

Have you ever toured a disability museum, visited a university for the Deaf or watched a game at the Deaflympics? If you have not, read on to learn more about them from our senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam.

Singapore Becomes the First South-East Asian Country to Ratify the Marrakesh Treaty

Singapore Becomes the First South-East Asian Country to Ratify the Marrakesh Treaty

30 April 2015

At the World Intellectual Property Day appreciation event on 23 April 2015, it was announced that Singapore was the first country in South-east Asia to ratify the Marrakesh Treaty which aimed at freeing up access to copyrighted materials for people with reading disabilities. Under the treaty which was effected on 30 March 2015, institutions serving the community of people with disabilities would face fewer obstacles and have greater flexibility in transcribing copyrighted materials to a form accessible to people with print disabilities.

Change Starts with the New Generation - CTPCLP Symposium 2015

Change Starts with the New Generation - CTPCLP Symposium 2015

17 April 2015

The Chua Thian Poh Community Leadership Programme (CTPCLP) Symposium 2015 was held on 14 April to commemorate the 4th year of the programme set up, as well as to recognise CTPCLP fellows' efforts in developing partnerships in the community. SPD’s Advocacy & Outreach division set up a booth at the symposium to create more awareness and provide information on disabilities to the participants.

 

Types of Ramps for Powered Mobility Devices

Types of Ramps for Powered Mobility Devices

17 April 2015

Powered wheelchairs and electric scooters enable persons with disabilities to move around the home and the community. However, there may be architectural barriers such as kerbs and steps that may prevent them from going in and out of their homes. SPD’s occupational therapist Alan Ong shares in this article some of the portable and permanent ramps that can be used to overcome them.

 

Catching Up with... Diroy, SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2015 Recipient

Catching Up with... Diroy, SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2015 Recipient

17 April 2015

SPD Aspiration Award 2015 winner Muhammad Diroy is an aspiring graphic designer who is expected to graduate from Temasek Polytechnic’s (TP) School of Design this year. We caught up with him at ‘The Design Show 2015 - A Brave New World’ this week where his final-year project was showcased.

 

Disability in Fashion

Disability in Fashion

02 April 2015

The use of ‘zero-size’ models has long been a topic of debate on the fashion runway. There has been increasing calls for ‘stamping of stereotypes’ and greater diversity in fashion models. In addition to featuring more ‘plus-size’ models, our senior advocacy analyst Poh Sho Siam tell us how more models with disabilities are also being featured in fashion advertisements and shows now.

Insights to the Roles of an Employment Support Specialist

Insights to the Roles of an Employment Support Specialist

02 April 2015

They talk to employers to ascertain the demands of a job, assess a person with disabilities’ work-readiness and coach them in the initial months to help make the transition into the new work environment easier. They are the conduit between employers and job seekers with disabilities, playing the roles of advocate, coach, mediator and friend. In this article, Elizabeth Chua and Raymond Tang tell us about their roles as employment support specialists (ESS) at SPD.

SPD Staff Recharge from One-Day Retreat

SPD Staff Recharge from One-Day Retreat

02 April 2015

2014, being SPD’s 50th year, was a busy one. The year saw staff from all quarters being roped in to help manage and co-ordinate activities which were organised on top of regular work. The SPD Staff Retreat on 27 March 2015 was therefore a welcome break as everyone took the opportunity to re-charge and enjoy each other’s company at the HomeTeamNS in Bukit Batok.

Thank You for Making the SPD Charity Show 2015 a Success

Thank You for Making the SPD Charity Show 2015 a Success

02 April 2015

Close to $5 million was raised through the SPD Charity Show 2015 telecast ‘live’ over MediaCorp Channel 8 on Sunday, 22 March, including $32,000 that was collected at the show’s outdoor segment in the form of a three-hour getai performance at Ang Mo Kio Central Stage. Here are some highlights from the show.

Another Big Thank You to FMC Technologies

Another Big Thank You to FMC Technologies

20 March 2015

FMC Technologies has been a long-time SPD partner, supporting us since 2006. For close to a decade, FMC staff have been familiar faces at our events, playing the role of both volunteers and fundraisers.

Final Countdown to the SPD Charity Show 2015

Final Countdown to the SPD Charity Show 2015

20 March 2015

We will be staging our fifth SPD Charity Show <<真情无障爱>> this Sunday, 22 March 2015, to raise funds for our various programmes and services for people with disabilities. A number of local and international artistes, alongside some SPD beneficiaries who have some form of disabilities, will perform at this year’s show to be telecast ‘live’ over Channel 8 at 7.00pm. This is what we have been doing leading up to the show.

Happy Social Workers’ Day 2015

Happy Social Workers’ Day 2015

20 March 2015

Social Workers’ Day (SWD) is celebrated annually worldwide on every third Tuesday in March and it fell on 17 March this year. Our professionals from the Community and Social Service Department (CSSD) took the opportunity to organise a part-celebratory-part-educational event at SPD on 18 March in the hope of sharing with everyone at SPD the work and role of social workers as well as its importance in society.

My Journey as a Social Worker

My Journey as a Social Worker

20 March 2015

SPD’s Community and Social Service Department (CSSD) comprises social workers or case management officers. They are professionals who put on multiple hats in order to help persons with disabilities and their caregivers lead more fulfilling lives. Our senior social worker Junaidah Baharawi shares with UPDATES why she became a social worker and her journey thus far.

Dreams Take Flight at SPD Charity Show 2015

Dreams Take Flight at SPD Charity Show 2015

06 March 2015

The SPD Charity Show is back for the fifth year, and this time with a novel twist. At the show’s media briefing that took place at SPD Ability Centre this Wednesday, 4 March, it was revealed that the three-hour show will also incorporate an outdoor segment in the form of a getai – a first for SPD Charity Show and indeed, any local charity show - to reach out to those in the heartlands.

True Group Donates Gym Equipment to SPD’s Rehabilitation Centres

True Group Donates Gym Equipment to SPD’s Rehabilitation Centres

06 March 2015

Using gym and specialised equipment for therapy is part of clinical rehabilitation for many of our clients at SPD’s rehabilitation centres to help in strength and flexibility training. Hence, we were happy to receive a donation of 12 gym equipment from fitness and wellness group, True Group. The equipment are now used at SPD Ability Centre, SPD@Tampines and SPD@Toa Payoh.

Bowling with the FAC and Sheltered Workshop Trainees

Bowling with the FAC and Sheltered Workshop Trainees

06 March 2015

Drained from a busy few months rushing to meet contract deadlines for the Lunar New Year season, trainees from the Sheltered Workshop welcomed the 28 February bowling trip organised by the Freedom Adventure Club (FAC) at Jurong Superbowl.

Ushering in the Year of the Goat

Ushering in the Year of the Goat

23 February 2015

We always get a little busier during the Chinese New Year period and it is no different this year as staff, volunteers and clients celebrate the occasion in their own unique ways!

Communication at Different Stages of a Child’s Growing Years

Communication at Different Stages of a Child’s Growing Years

23 February 2015

Communication is the exchange of messages and meanings. It uses all our senses, although we often focus on language and speech because they help to convey the most complex of meanings. SPD’s speech therapist Shruti Pandit explains how a child communicates at different stages of his/her life.

All Hands on Deck at Sheltered Workshop

All Hands on Deck at Sheltered Workshop

23 February 2015

Our Sheltered Workshop was bustling with activities as trainees and volunteers worked hand in hand to get orders out of the door for this Chinese New Year season!

Bursaries and Grants Presented at the SPD Education Programme Awards Presentation Ceremony 2015

Bursaries and Grants Presented at the SPD Education Programme Awards Presentation Ceremony 2015

06 February 2015

Held at SAFRA Jurong on 31 January, the SPD Education Programme Awards Presentation Ceremony saw 73 students with physical disabilities and students with physically disabled parents who are from low-income families receive $35,700 in bursaries, along with three youth who received the SPD Youth Aspiration Award. 

Conference by SMU and SPD Advocate for Education for Inclusive Workspaces

Conference by SMU and SPD Advocate for Education for Inclusive Workspaces

06 February 2015

More than 300 guests from corporate companies, the government sector, social services and non-profit organisations, academia and the community of people with disabilities convened at the Singapore Management University’s Mochtar Riady Auditorium on 3 February for a dialogue on the role of education in helping to build a better place tomorrow, in connection with the working world.

NUS Undergraduates Lead by Example

NUS Undergraduates Lead by Example

06 February 2015

Understanding the importance of transport accessibility in the rehabilitation and integration of people with disabilities, students from the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) College of Alice and Peter Tan (CAPT) decided to raise funds for SPD’s door-to-door transport programme.

Recognition for a Decade of Volunteering – Ms Poh Hwee Hian, Honorary Treasurer, SPD Board of Management

Recognition for a Decade of Volunteering – Ms Poh Hwee Hian, Honorary Treasurer, SPD Board of Management

06 February 2015

Made up of volunteers and professionals in their own fields, members in SPD’s Board of Management give of their time and expertise selflessly to advance the interest and welfare of people with disabilities. Many of our Board members are long-time volunteers and we are very happy that Ms Poh Hwee Hian was presented with the Long Service Award for Voluntary Welfare Organisation volunteers from the National Council of Social Service.

SPD Refreshes Board of Management and Sub-Committees

SPD Refreshes Board of Management and Sub-Committees

06 February 2015

Over the last six months, SPD has refreshed its Board and Board Committee memberships with the appointment of a new Board member, Mr Tan Soo Nan, and six new Board Committee members – Mr Lim Hua Beng, Mr Tang Liheng, Assistant Professor Wong Meng Ee, Mr Zhang Weijie, Mr Ajay Sondhi and Mr Rajan Raju. We look forward to the stewardship of our Board Members and to working together with them to integrate persons with disabilities in our community.

Creating Disability Awareness at ITE College Central

Creating Disability Awareness at ITE College Central

23 January 2015

SPD returned to the ITE College Central in Ang Mo Kio for a one-day roadshow on 12 January held during the student orientation programme. We aimed to share with students different mental health and special educational needs as well as the support services available.

Sharing Through SPD Charity Hongbao

Sharing Through SPD Charity Hongbao

23 January 2015

With the Lunar New Year round the corner, many households are busy spring cleaning and stocking up their homes with festive goodies. Children also look forward to wearing new clothes and receiving red packets or hongbaos from their elders. In this time of abundance, we hope to inculcate compassion among our young by reaching out to them through the SPD Charity Hongbao and encouraging them to share the blessings that they receive.

Letter on Corporate Social Responsibility

Letter on Corporate Social Responsibility

23 January 2015

We are heartened that many corporate organisations have stepped up to contribute back to the society. While taking heed that corporate social responsibility goes beyond voluntarism and philanthropy, the continuity of such deeds are important considerations for VWOs that rely on the help from the community. Mr Abhimanyau Pal, executive director of SPD, gives his take on this in the following letter which was first published in The Straits Times Online Forum on 12 January 2015.

Accessibility Features at SPD Ability Centre

Accessibility Features at SPD Ability Centre

23 January 2015

Persons with disabilities often encounter barriers in the built environment, for example kerbs, stairs or narrow corridors that deter wheelchair-users from entering a building or accessing a public amenity which in turn restricts them from participating socially. At SPD Ability Centre, we have incorporated accessibility features in our building to allow ease of access for persons with disabilities. Our advocacy senior analyst Ms Poh Sho Siam highlights these features to us.

Wishes for the New Year!

Wishes for the New Year!

09 January 2015

It's 2015 and we are all looking forward to a great year ahead! Here are some of our wishes for the New Year.

Preparatory Programme Kicks Off for 19 Trainees

Preparatory Programme Kicks Off for 19 Trainees

09 January 2015

For any building to be structurally strong and sound, the foundation is key. The same can be said for us as we learn and grow. A learning block with a strong foundation enables us to reach our fullest potential. With this in mind, SPD introduced the SPD Pre-Vocational Training to help trainees build a strong foundation in their basic computer skills.

Celebrating Diversity, Advancing in Unity – An Occupational Therapy Day Celebration

Celebrating Diversity, Advancing in Unity – An Occupational Therapy Day Celebration

09 January 2015

The first Occupational Therapy Day was held in 2010 and since then, a day is set aside each year by occupational therapists (OTs) the world over to promote and celebrate the profession internationally. For Singapore this year, OT Day falls on 11 January. SPD’s OTs will celebrate the occasion by organising a small but fun and meaningful educational fair to take place from 9 to 14 January at SPD’s four centres. 

Disability Awareness Programme Conducted for NUS Students

Disability Awareness Programme Conducted for NUS Students

09 January 2015

What do you do when you meet someone with a disability? Can you greet them with a handshake? Do you know how to help a person using a white cane? With SPD’s help, students from the National University of Singapore (NUS) found answers to these questions, enabling them to overcome the initial awkwardness when meeting someone with a disability. 

Christmas Celebrations with SPD

Christmas Celebrations with SPD

26 December 2014

It was all cheery at SPD as volunteers and partners celebrated the festive season with us!

Assistive Technology Improving Quality of Life

Assistive Technology Improving Quality of Life

26 December 2014

There has been a revival of interest in assistive technology in recent months as Singapore gears towards becoming a ‘Smart Nation’. Mr Abhimanyau Pal, executive director of SPD, shares in this letter the importance of harnessing technology to help people with special needs. The letter was published in The Straits Times’ Forum on 15 December.

Integrating Stroke Survivors into the Society

Integrating Stroke Survivors into the Society

26 December 2014

Sheena Astilla is an occupational therapist at SPD’s Transition Programme for Employment. She works with those diagnosed with stroke or spinal cord injury to get them back into employment. Sheena shares how stroke survivors can be successfully integrated back into mainstream society.

A Healthier and Tight-Knit SPD

A Healthier and Tight-Knit SPD

12 December 2014

Poet Gwendolyn Brooks once said "Good health is a duty to yourself, to your contemporaries, to your inheritors, to the progress of the world". So for the general wellness of the SPD staff, we organised the SPD Well-Being Day on 27 November to not only promote healthy and positive living, but also allow staff from different centres to spend time together.

 

SPD Volunteers, Thank You!

SPD Volunteers, Thank You!

12 December 2014

SPD celebrated the dedication and selflessness of volunteers at the annual SPD Volunteer Appreciation session held at the Cathay Cineleisure Orchard on 6 December. Close to 130 volunteers who attended the exclusive event were treated to a hearty breakfast before they were ushered into the movie hall for the sneak preview of Walt Disney Picture’s “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day”.

The Freedom Adventure Club Has a New Look!

The Freedom Adventure Club Has a New Look!

12 December 2014

SPD’s Freedom Adventure Club (FAC) is managed by a group of dedicated volunteers who comes together to organise outdoor and physical-based activities for people with disabilities whom SPD serves. To celebrate its 10th year, the volunteers have put on their creative hats to come up with a logo for FAC.

Graduation Parties at SPD

Graduation Parties at SPD

12 December 2014

We celebrated the graduation of 26 children from our Building Bridges EIPIC Centres as well as held a DAC Musical Extravaganza 2014 to mark the end of a wonderful year!

Have a Sweet Day on Us

Have a Sweet Day on Us

28 November 2014

A lolli never fails to bring a smile to anyone, young or old, what more if it could also be used to brighten up someone’s life.

Purple Reigns at the Parade

Purple Reigns at the Parade

28 November 2014

It was a sea of purple at Hong Lim Park on 15 November as more than 5,000 people gathered to show solidarity for inclusion of persons of disabilities in mainstream society. For the second year running, the Purple Parade was organised to raise awareness of the special needs community.

PM Lee Celebrates with SPD on its 50th Birthday

PM Lee Celebrates with SPD on its 50th Birthday

28 November 2014

SPD celebrated its 50th birthday with 400 staff, beneficiaries, donors, volunteers as well as representatives from Government agencies and other voluntary welfare organisations at The Fullerton Hotel Singapore last evening. The gala dinner was also graced by Prime Minister Lee who was the Guest-of-Honour.

Types of Controllers for Powered Wheelchairs

Types of Controllers for Powered Wheelchairs

28 November 2014

There are many ways to control a powered wheelchair. The most commonly seen interface is the conventional joystick. However users who are unable to use the conventional joystick due to certain physical limitations can explore different types of controllers. Here, our occupational therapist Alan Ong shows us some of these alternatives.

 

Long-term Care Planning For Caregivers

Long-term Care Planning For Caregivers

14 November 2014

Even as they worry about overcoming the daily challenges which they face from taking care of their loved ones with disabilities, one of the most common and main concerns that ageing caregivers have would be their care arrangements once they be unable to take on the caregiving role anymore.

Out And About – Mobility Wheelchairs And Vehicles

Out And About – Mobility Wheelchairs And Vehicles

14 November 2014

Having the ability to move from one place to another plays an important role in helping persons with disabilities get out of the house and become a part of the society. A mobility device, such as a wheelchair or a wheelchair accessible vehicle, acts as a catalyst to greater independence and social integration, enabling people with disabilities to be mobile, lead a healthy lifestyle and participate in community life.

A Day to Express Appreciation to Our Caregivers

A Day to Express Appreciation to Our Caregivers

31 October 2014

The incidence and management of stress for those who care for people with special needs has received much media attention of late. However, management of caregivers’ stress requires a multi-pronged approach. There is no single approach that can effectively tackle the complexity of this issue that is likely to be ongoing throughout the journey of a caregiver. SPD does its part to support and recognise the often unsung efforts of these caregivers by organising the annual SPD caregivers’ appreciation day held on 11 Oct this year. SPD’s senior social worker Angela Chung shares her experience for that day.

Do More to Retain Foreign Allied Health Professionals in Social Service

Do More to Retain Foreign Allied Health Professionals in Social Service

31 October 2014

Retention of physiotherapists, occupational therapists and speech therapists is an ongoing challenge. SPD’s executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal suggests a way around the issue in this letter which was published in Today Online on 22 October. He was responding to the article “MOH outlines strategies to recruit, retain allied health professionals” on Channel NewsAsia which reported the Health Minister’s acknowledgement of the important role allied health professionals play and existing strategies to retain them.

Student with Disability Wins National Youth Achievement Gold Award

Student with Disability Wins National Youth Achievement Gold Award

31 October 2014

William Tay was only four when he lost his hearing after a bout of high fever. Although the episode changed his life forever, he did not wallow in self-pity nor did he allow his limitations to deter him from exceling in whatever he did. William was presented with the National Youth Achievement Gold Award 2014 at an award ceremony on 30 October by President Tony Tan. In this interview, we catch up with William, who is also a Microsoft YouthSpark 2014 Scholar, to find out what inspires him and his aspirations for the future.

Finding a Voice and Breaking the Silence: International AAC Awareness Month

Finding a Voice and Breaking the Silence: International AAC Awareness Month

31 October 2014

In conjunction with the International AAC Awareness Month in October, the Specialised Assistive Technology Centre featured these stories of several individuals with communication challenges who use Augmentative and Alternative Communication, or AAC in place of their own voice to communicate. AAC refers to communication methods which augment or replace verbal speech and/or writing. It empowers individuals with complex communication needs with the means to break that silence and to find their voice to express their needs, views, dreams and aspirations.

Students with Disabilities Get a Boost from Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation

Students with Disabilities Get a Boost from Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation

23 October 2014

The APB Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities was launched in 2004 to recognise students with disabilities who have excelled not only in their studies, but who are also all-rounders who demonstrate strong leadership abilities in their community. The scholarship does not carry any bond and the awardees receive an annual allowance of $12,000 to cover course fees for the duration of their studies at any of the six recognised local universities.

Nippon Paint Singapore Gives SPD@Toa Payoh a Makeover

Nippon Paint Singapore Gives SPD@Toa Payoh a Makeover

17 October 2014

SPD@Toa Payoh is a day rehabilitation centre providing rehabilitation services, nursing care, day care, weekend respite care and transport services to more than 240 adults and seniors with disabilities. The centre has not had a fresh coat of paint for a while and the makeover by around 80 staff volunteers from Nippon Paint (S) was definitely a welcome initiative. 

Mobile Apps as Tools for Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Mobile Apps as Tools for Augmentative and Alternative Communication

17 October 2014

Recently, there has been much attention on how apps loaded into mobile devices can be used for communication. In conjunction with the International Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) Awareness month celebrated around the world every October, Ms Sarah Yong, head of clinical services at SPD’s Specialised Assistive Technology Centre, explores the pros and cons of using apps for AAC and highlights how it has made available many opportunities for communication for those who have difficulty to doing so.

Out of the Classroom and into the Workforce

Out of the Classroom and into the Workforce

17 October 2014

Twenty people with disabilities were presented with certificates for completing the IAC Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS), a vocational training programme offered by SPD. The graduates of the programme, made possible with the support of info-communications provider StarHub and SG Enable, were lauded at a ceremony held at the SPD Ability Centre on 14 October.

Creating an Inclusive Workforce: A Partnership of Many Stakeholders

Creating an Inclusive Workforce: A Partnership of Many Stakeholders

17 October 2014

Jobs are typically designed for able-bodied individuals and the tasks assigned would largely tap on the employees’ cognitive ability, sight, hearing and speech. To provide equal job opportunities to people with physical or sensory impairments, employers should be willing to re-design jobs so that tasks that cannot be performed by people with disabilities are assigned to others who can carry them out, leaving people with disabilities to handle those they are able to. By doing so, employers are leveraging on the strengths of the employee while addressing their limitations.

Corporate Partners Contribute in Different Ways

Corporate Partners Contribute in Different Ways

03 October 2014

Hai Leck Engineering Pte Ltd organised a golf tournament on 10 September at Tanah Merah Country Club to benefit SPD.

Meet the Four 2014 Microsoft YouthSpark Scholars

Meet the Four 2014 Microsoft YouthSpark Scholars

03 October 2014

Meet the four inspiring young Singaporeans with disabilities who displayed courage and passion for higher learning to be awarded the Microsoft YouthSpark Scholarship on 26 September.

More Caregiver-centric Help for Parents of Children with Special Needs

More Caregiver-centric Help for Parents of Children with Special Needs

03 October 2014

The recent sentencing of a mother, who had psychiatric issues, to jail for causing the tragic demise of her 9-year old son with special needs last year had raised questions about the care system for children with special needs and more importantly, the support for caregivers. SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares his thoughts on the importance of supporting caregivers in this letter to The Straits Times Forum which was published on 29 September.

President Tony Tan Visits SPD

President Tony Tan Visits SPD

03 October 2014

It was a privilege for us to host President Tony Tan Keng Yam on 26 September as he visited the SPD Ability Centre as part of the President’s Challenge Volunteer Drive 2014.

Employers and Social Sector Partners Gather at Towards An Inclusive Workforce 2014

Employers and Social Sector Partners Gather at Towards An Inclusive Workforce 2014

03 October 2014

Assistive technology was the central theme at this year’s Towards An Inclusive Workforce which was held at SPD Ability Centre on 27 September. Over 100 participants attended the event and heard from people with disabilities who had gone on to be successful in their respective careers as a result of sheer determination and with the help of technology.

Understanding Persons with Disabilities

Understanding Persons with Disabilities

03 October 2014

The wheelchair is a common mobility aid for those with mobility challenges. Wheelchairs enable people with disabilities to get around and allow them to participate in community activities. Some of us may feel awkward interacting with wheelchair users for the first time.

Giving In So Many Ways

Giving In So Many Ways

19 September 2014

A school teacher in Washington, Jackie Mutcheson, offered these insightful words “It takes each of us to make a difference for all of us.” At SPD, we often experience the generosity of those who contribute a bit of themselves to improve the lives of others. Here are some events over the last few weeks that have warmed our hearts.

New Board Elected At The 50th  Annual General Meeting

New Board Elected At The 50th Annual General Meeting

19 September 2014

SPD’s 50th Annual General Meeting (AGM) was held on 30 August 2014 at the SPD Ability Centre where a new Board was elected for the term 2014 to 2016

World Physical Therapy Day: Fit To Take Part

World Physical Therapy Day: Fit To Take Part

19 September 2014

In conjunction with World Physical Therapy Day or World Physiotherapy Day on 8 September, SPD’s physiotherapists organised a fitness screening and exercise prescription session for SPD staff on 10 September.

Overcoming Life’s Adversities

Overcoming Life’s Adversities

05 September 2014

A client at SPD’s new Transition Programme for Employment (TPE), Zi Heng, was a teenager leading an active lifestyle. Working as a lifeguard then, he was about to enter university with hopes for a bright future when a freak accident turned his world around. He describes in this blog post his challenges thus far and his plans for the future.

SPD Greeting Cards Are On Sale Now

SPD Greeting Cards Are On Sale Now

05 September 2014

To help spread the festive cheer this year-end, we are pleased to unveil our card collection this year.

Themed the ‘Golden Collection’, this commemorative edition is designed with SPD’s 50th jubilee anniversary in mind and comprises of 18 Christmas and Lunar New Year cards. A project that integrates different abilities, the card designs were enhanced from original artworks by SPD’s clients and trainees, and SPD’s Sheltered Workshop were engaged in packing of the cards.

Adaptive Aids For Enhanced Living

Adaptive Aids For Enhanced Living

05 September 2014

Adaptive aids are devices, controls or appliances which enable persons with physical limitations to improve their ability to carry out activities of daily living such as dining, dressing and grooming. Many of these devices are modifications or alterations to commonly used items to help persons with disabilities perform everyday tasks without the need for caregivers’ help or assistance. 

Letter By SPD Executive Director On Social Service Sector To Be Included In The Country’s Infrastructure Planning

Letter By SPD Executive Director On Social Service Sector To Be Included In The Country’s Infrastructure Planning

21 August 2014

In an open letter to Minister of Social and Family Development Mr Chan Chun Sing, SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal, supported the Minister’s call for the social service sector to be included in the country’s infrastructure planning.

SPD Celebrates National Day 2014

SPD Celebrates National Day 2014

21 August 2014

Any celebration of the nation’s birthday has always been a joyous affair at SPD. No exception this year as staff at the SPD Ability Centre gathered for the National Day Observance Ceremony on the morning of 8 August to renew our allegiance to our country

SPD President Appointed As Nominated Member Of Parliament

SPD President Appointed As Nominated Member Of Parliament

21 August 2014

The social service and disability sectors found a voice in Parliament in the form of Ms Chia Yong Yong, SPD’s President, who was one of nine new Nominated Members of Parliament (NMP) announced by the Special Select Committee of Parliament on 11 August.

Supporting People With Suicidal Ideations

Supporting People With Suicidal Ideations

21 August 2014

The circumstances surrounding the demise of Hollywood actor Robin Williams early this month has put the spotlight on mental illnesses. He was reported to be suffering from the early stages of Parkinson's disease along with severe depression at the time of his death, sparking new talks about the co-relation between the conditions. Parkinson's experts have noted how the incurable and debilitating nervous system disorder also affects people emotionally. In this article, first published in October 2010, a former SPD social worker, Stella Quek, shared her thoughts on managing people with acquired physical disabilities who have suicidal thoughts.

Integration of Children with Different Abilities Encourages Social Acceptance

Integration of Children with Different Abilities Encourages Social Acceptance

21 August 2014

In his response to a letter in The Straits Times Forum on equipping people with disabilities with necessary skills to earn a living, SPD executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal reiterated the need for such support to be available to them from young. We bring you his letter which was published on The Straits Times Online Forum on 21 August.

SPD Changes Its Name to Reflect the Wider Disability Community Served

SPD Changes Its Name to Reflect the Wider Disability Community Served

08 August 2014

We marked another important milestone in our 50th year anniversary celebrations with a new name and logo that came into effect on 30 July.

Letter From The Executive Director: Helping Young Stroke Patients Get Back To Work

Letter From The Executive Director: Helping Young Stroke Patients Get Back To Work

08 August 2014

Executive director of SPD Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares his views on the relevance of our new Transition Programme for Employment (TPE) in a letter to The Straits Times which was published in its forum page on 22 July 2014.

Accessibility in Public Transport – What Other Countries Are Doing

Accessibility in Public Transport – What Other Countries Are Doing

08 August 2014

Just like many of us, persons with disabilities also make use of public transport to get to school and work and for leisure. Having the ability to move from one place to another plays a crucial role in the integration of persons with disabilities into society. Greater accessibility gives these individuals more independence and encourages them to step out and engage in more community activities.

People – The Building Blocks of SPD

People – The Building Blocks of SPD

08 August 2014

Closely-knitted staff is the foundation of a strong and sturdy organisation as they are likely to perform better from their commitment to attaining group goals. With that in mind, 206 SPD staff gathered at the SPD Ability Centre for a day of bonding on 24 July.

Weekend Respite For Caregivers With The CBWRC

Weekend Respite For Caregivers With The CBWRC

25 July 2014

The Centre Based Weekend Respite Care (CBWRC) service was officially launched by the Health Minister Gan Kim Yong on 14 July. An initiative by the Agency for Integrated Care (AIC) funded by the Ministry of Health (MOH), it aims to provide the opportunity for caregivers of adults or senior persons with physical or cognitive disabilities to take time off from their weekend caregiving duties for self-care or to engage in other roles and responsibilities.

Starhub Calls On Customers To Pledge 4G4Good

Starhub Calls On Customers To Pledge 4G4Good

25 July 2014

Customers of StarHub Mobile will find it very easy to do their part for the community with the 4G4Good initiative. From 12 July 2014, eligible StarHub post-paid mobile customers would be able to pledge their unused talk-time, data and SMS for the month of August 2014 in support of five selected beneficiaries including SPD.

Disability Awareness At Republic Polytechnic

Disability Awareness At Republic Polytechnic

25 July 2014

Republic Polytechnic (RP) organised a Wellness Campaign at their campus on 9 and 10 July with the aim of creating greater awareness and better understanding of persons with disabilities among their student population. More than a hundred students visited the SPD booth over the two-day event and heard from our Advocacy and Outreach colleagues on disability issues and participated in activities that highlighted the various challenges that people with disabilities face daily.

 Paws In Service - How Service Dogs Could Assist Persons With Disabilities

Paws In Service - How Service Dogs Could Assist Persons With Disabilities

25 July 2014

Many of us have probably heard of dogs being deployed to search for disaster survivors or helping the police track down drugs and explosives. In some countries, dogs are also trained to provide assistance to persons with disabilities and those with medical conditions. This kind of assistance dogs are known as ‘service dogs’. Ms Poh Sho Siam, senior analyst of SPD’s advocacy team, shows us ‘man’s best friend’ at work.

New Programme to Help People with Spinal Cord and Stroke Injuries Re-Join the Workforce

New Programme to Help People with Spinal Cord and Stroke Injuries Re-Join the Workforce

11 July 2014

SPD has launched a new programme in June to help prepare stroke survivors and those with spinal cord-related injuries to return to mainstream workforce. The programme encompasses active rehabilitation, work readiness training and employment support.

Third Run for Office Skills Training Programme

Third Run for Office Skills Training Programme

11 July 2014

The third batch of IAC Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS) trainees, along with their caregivers, attended the pre-course Caregivers’ Briefing on the morning of 7 July.  It was to mark the start of a six-month training programme for 13 new trainees.  They and their caregivers were brought on a familiarity tour of the SPD Ability Centre and to get a better understanding of the training programme.

Affordable and Accessible Transport Helps People with Disabilities Move Forward

Affordable and Accessible Transport Helps People with Disabilities Move Forward

11 July 2014

In a letter to The Straits Times, published on 7 July 2014, SPD’s executive director Mr Abhimanyau Pal shares his view on how recently announced public transport initiatives help to enhance the lives of people with disabilities in the long run.

Thank You for Supporting the SPD Flag Day 2014

Thank You for Supporting the SPD Flag Day 2014

11 July 2014

About 900 SPD staff and volunteers were mobilised on 14 June for the SPD Flag Day island-wide street collection.

Letter on Retaining Talents in the Social Sector

Letter on Retaining Talents in the Social Sector

27 June 2014

SPD executive director, Mr Abhimanyau Pal, weighs in on attracting and retaining the right people for the social sector in a letter to the TODAY newspaper which was published on 17 June 2014.

SPD Recognised at NTUC May Day Model Partnership Awards 2014

SPD Recognised at NTUC May Day Model Partnership Awards 2014

27 June 2014

SPD, nominated by KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) as its working partner, joined the hospital in receiving the NTUC May Day Model Partnership Awards (Category C – Management and Union/Partners) on 24 May in a ceremony organised by NTUC and held at the Devan Nair Institute for Employment and Employability. The event was attended by some 500 award winners and guests.

Inclusive Education and Inclusive Mindset for an Inclusive Society

Inclusive Education and Inclusive Mindset for an Inclusive Society

27 June 2014

Providing more opportunities and assistance to persons with disabilities has been brought to greater attention in the media recently. It is encouraging that Singaporeans are getting more concerned over the needs of persons with disabilities, perhaps an indication that the society is a step closer to becoming an inclusive one. Ms Poh Sho Siam, senior analyst of SPD’s advocacy team, shares how early intervention, equal opportunities and mindsets can help students with disabilities excel.

Deutsche Bank’s Donate One Day Initiative

Deutsche Bank’s Donate One Day Initiative

27 June 2014

Since 2010, employees at Deutsche Bank Singapore Branch have been donating part of their salaries, ranging from one to 20 days, to selected charities under their Donate One Day fundraising initiative. SPD is one of the four charities to benefit from the the bank’s latest fundraising initiative.

The A to Z of Kite Culture

The A to Z of Kite Culture

27 June 2014

Volunteers from the Freedom Adventure Club recently organised a kite-making workshop and kite-flying outing over two weekends for about 20 Sheltered Workshop trainees.

 

Job Accommodation to Enhance Employability of People with Disabilities

Job Accommodation to Enhance Employability of People with Disabilities

27 June 2014

The Enabling Employers Award given out in April commemorated employers who have taken the lead in employing people with disabilities. This is an encouraging trend as people with disabilities want to be contributing members of the economy. Through employment, they can gain self-confidence and be self-reliant and financially independent. In this article, Poh Sho Siam, senior analyst from SPD's advocacy team, provides insight on how people with disabilities can work efficiently if given the opportunities, training and accommodation support such as assistive technology and workplace adjustments.

Long Service Award for Two SPD Board Members

Long Service Award for Two SPD Board Members

30 May 2014

We salute two of our long-serving Board members for their invaluable contribution to and in support of SPD as they received the Long Service Award for Voluntary Welfare Organisation volunteers from the National Council of Social Service.

Singapore Ranked 64th in the World In Giving

Singapore Ranked 64th in the World In Giving

30 May 2014

Where do Singaporeans measure in terms of giving? The ‘World Giving Index’ report examines the nature of giving around the world through three aspects of giving behavior. Published by the Charities Aid Foundation in the United Kingdom, the report provides insight to the act of giving across the globe annually, including Singapore, since 2010.

In this article, our advocacy senior analyst, Ms Poh Sho Siam, gives an overview of how Singapore has fared as compared to other countries in the world.

GoEasy: Going to Places More Easily

GoEasy: Going to Places More Easily

30 May 2014

GoEasy (formerly known as Accessing Accessibility) was one of the five teams at the Enabling Community coLAB that won $20,000 in seed money to help jumpstart their idea. Consisting of six members, including two wheelchair users and an SPD staff, their solution works like mobile and web applications, or apps, that crowdsource feedback and rate places based on accessibility.

 

Support the SPD Flag Day

Support the SPD Flag Day

30 May 2014

Cindy Goh had been out celebrating the end of her school examinations with a night out cycling with friends when the unexpected happened. The then 15-year-old did not see a lorry illegally parked on the road and crashed into it. The accident left Cindy with serious spinal cord injuries. She was in a coma for two weeks and when she awoke, she was devastated at losing her ability to walk and her independence.

Hong Kong Visitors Share Tips on Self-management and Self-help in Stroke Rehabilitation

Hong Kong Visitors Share Tips on Self-management and Self-help in Stroke Rehabilitation

30 May 2014

Training is essential in developing the health-care manpower capabilities for continued excellence. The Ministry of Health’s Health Manpower Development Plan (HMDP) is aimed at developing Singapore's health-care manpower capabilities and improving the quality and range of health services to meet evolving national health-care needs by learning from the best.

Safari-themed Mural Brightens Up SPD@Jurong

Safari-themed Mural Brightens Up SPD@Jurong

30 May 2014

SPD@Jurong provides programmes and services for children with special needs living in the West, namely the Early Intervention Programme for Children and Infants (EIPIC) and Development Support Programme (DSP). With this main emphasis on children, it was essential to create as welcoming and child-friendly an environment as possible.

Being Sporting for the Day

Being Sporting for the Day

16 May 2014

Organised by SPD’s Day Activity Centre, the Inter DAC Sports Day was held on 15 May at the Nanyang Polytechnic Indoor Sports Hall with NCSS’ Deputy CEO Ms Tina Hung as the Guest-of-Honour. The ‘mini-paralympics’ brought together participants with disabilities who competed in popular but modified sports such as discus-throwing, hockey and track events, as well as an unconventional donut-eating relay race.

Striding up to SPD’s 50th Anniversary Celebrations Kick-off and the Opening of SPD@Jurong

Striding up to SPD’s 50th Anniversary Celebrations Kick-off and the Opening of SPD@Jurong

15 May 2014

The sun shone bright as a crowd of 200 partners, clients, caregivers and staff of SPD witnessed Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam officially open SPD@Jurong on 10 May 2014.

Groups Generate New Tech Ideas to Improve Lives of People with Disabilities

Groups Generate New Tech Ideas to Improve Lives of People with Disabilities

15 May 2014

The Enabling Community coLAB is a month-long social innovation project organised by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) and SG Enable to encourage collaboration between persons with disabilities, social entrepreneurs, researchers, students, developers, designers and other professionals to design and prototype solutions to empower persons with disabilities.

SPD Receives Partners Award at the Enabling Employers Awards

SPD Receives Partners Award at the Enabling Employers Awards

25 April 2014

In appreciation of the support extended to persons with disabilities in helping to enhance their opportunities for employment, SPD received the Partners Award at the Enabling Employers Awards Gala Dinner held at Gardens by the Bay on 24 April.

In Their Shoes - Experiencing Disabilities for a Day

In Their Shoes - Experiencing Disabilities for a Day

25 April 2014

SPD’s Advocacy and Public Education department conducted a disability simulation exercise for a class of 36 students at the ITE College Central on 23 April. The objectives were to increase awareness and help correct misconceptions about people with disabilities. We also hoped that this experience would help participants learn about the challenges that people with disabilities faced and generate greater awareness of their needs.

Congratulations on a Beautiful Concert

Congratulations on a Beautiful Concert

25 April 2014

Organised by the Beautiful Mind Charity for the third year running, the ‘2014 Beautiful Mind, Beautiful Concert - Beginning of Another Miracle’ that was held at the SOTA Concert Hall on 19 April 2014 was an inspiring event which showcased the musical talents of the performers from Beautiful Mind Charity Korea and the Beautiful Mind Music Academy.

Beyond Borders – A Lunchtime Sharing by APB Foundation Scholar Winston Wong

Beyond Borders – A Lunchtime Sharing by APB Foundation Scholar Winston Wong

11 April 2014

One of our Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities recipients Winston Wong, who is hearing impaired, shared his story through a special edition of the Beyond Borders initiative to 50 participants comprising mainly of NUS students and staff. Along with visually impaired research scientist Dr Yeo Sze Ling, he shared the challenges he faced in his academic pursuits, how he overcame them and what drove him to persevere despite the obstacles

Dream Power With SP Care

Dream Power With SP Care

11 April 2014

A group of students from Singapore Polytechnic’s (SP) School of Engineering applied their creativity and knowledge to design innovative devices that enhance the lives of our seniors and of people with disabilities.

Singapore Rehabilitation Conference 2014

Singapore Rehabilitation Conference 2014

11 April 2014

A team of SPD staff was invited to the 3rd Singapore Rehabilitation Conference held at the Singapore General Hospital from 27 to 29 March to share their knowledge and expertise in the sector.

Heart2Climb – Taking On Heights

Heart2Climb – Taking On Heights

11 April 2014

Heart2Climb is a 220km trekking expedition by full-time students Ashik and Ashok, to raise funds for SPD. The expedition will take the duo over 5,400m into the Himalayan Mountain Range. In this e-mail interview, Ashok tells us more about the pair of mountaineering enthusiasts and the fundraiser that will push them to their physical and mental limits.

A Centre In Toa Payoh From 1 April 2014

A Centre In Toa Payoh From 1 April 2014

11 April 2014

We are pleased to share that we have a centre in Toa Payoh from 1 April 2014. SPD has taken over the management of TP Healthcare, which brings the total number of SPD centres island-wide to four – the SPD Ability Centre in Tiong Bahru, SPD@Tampines, SPD@Jurong, and the latest addition, TP Healthcare which has been renamed SPD@Toa Payoh.

EIPIC Healthy Lifestyle And Sports Day 2014

EIPIC Healthy Lifestyle And Sports Day 2014

28 March 2014

Happy chatter and joyful laughter filled the whole SPD Ability Centre on 18 March as sing-along sessions and games were organised for close to 50 children and their caregivers from our early intervention programme as part of the annual Healthy Lifestyle and Sports Day.

You Are ‘BEYOUTIFUL

You Are ‘BEYOUTIFUL

28 March 2014

The Singapore Management University (SMU) Peer Helpers are full-time undergraduate students who are equipped to help and meet the emotional needs of their peers. As part of community service, SMU Peer Helpers organised an event for our students with disabilities which was held at SMU campus on 21 March 2014.

Raise Funds by Breaking Physical and Mental Limits

Raise Funds by Breaking Physical and Mental Limits

28 March 2014

Sundown With Love, community arm of Sundown Marathon, is back this year with SPD as one of four beneficiaries.

Beautiful Beginning Of Another Miracle

Beautiful Beginning Of Another Miracle

28 March 2014

SPD beneficiaries have been invited to perform at the 2014 Beautiful Mind, Beautiful Concert - Beginning of Another Miracle in April 2014.

 SPD’s Views On Whether Wider Corridors Make Sense For Private Projects

SPD’s Views On Whether Wider Corridors Make Sense For Private Projects

28 March 2014

Do wider corridors make sense for private projects? We responded to the The Straits Times' article (22 March) with our views on the matter in a letter to the Forum Page.

Barriers To Integrating People With Disabilities In Mainstream Society

Barriers To Integrating People With Disabilities In Mainstream Society

14 March 2014

In the last decade, the authorities have taken considerable steps to help people with disabilities integrate into the community. They include improvements to building access such as ensuring more toilets for people with disabilities, designating more tables at food centres for people with disabilities, installation of lifts and tactile tiles at train stations, provision of more wheelchair-friendly buses and amenities as well as the formulation of the Enabling Master Plan to enhance the inclusion of people with disabilities.

Fall Prevention Tips

Fall Prevention Tips

14 March 2014

By 2030, it is estimated that two out of 10 people in Singapore will be above 65. It is no surprise then that safety of the elderly at home would be a major concern for many as a serious fall could lead to irrevocable effects on their health and affect their quality of life. Our therapists Nurul Atiqah, Alan Ong and Selvaraj Senthilkumar, offer tips on how falls can be prevented and what can be done to make homes elderly friendly.

How Dedicated Transport Service Works

How Dedicated Transport Service Works

14 March 2014

Dedicated transport service has been put under the spotlight recently after Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Tharman Shanmugaratnam announced at the Singapore Budget 2014 last month that persons with disabilities will be getting more help for their transport costs. UPDATES shows what dedicated transport is and how such a service is essential to some of our beneficiaries.

Looking At Budget 2014

Looking At Budget 2014

28 February 2014

The Budget 2014 was announced on 21 February by Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam. He announced that there would be more help available for people with disabilities, families with children with special needs and the elderly. Here are the benefits extended to people with disabilities announced in Budget 2014.

 Volunteers Needed For SPD Flag Day 2014

Volunteers Needed For SPD Flag Day 2014

28 February 2014

The SPD Flag Day 2014 will be held on 14 June 2014 from 10am to 6pm and we are looking for all the help that we can get!

Get Your Gear, Suit Up And Let’s Laser Tag!

Get Your Gear, Suit Up And Let’s Laser Tag!

28 February 2014

On a bright Saturday morning on 22 February, a corner of Bishan Park became a friendly battle ground for 16 clients from the SPD Education Programme as they engaged in Laser Tag under the guidance of 20 volunteers from the Freedom Adventure Club.  

For Better Or For Worse, In Sickness Or In Health

For Better Or For Worse, In Sickness Or In Health

14 February 2014

As many celebrate Valentine’s Day on 14 February, we thought it would be apt to revisit an article by Khoo Khee Ling, the head of SPD’s Community & Social Service Department, who gave her insights on the realities of couples staying together in a marriage even after one acquires a disability. This article was first published in ExtraPage in July 2008.

SPD Working With Singapore Management University To Help Students With Disabilities Cope Better In School

SPD Working With Singapore Management University To Help Students With Disabilities Cope Better In School

14 February 2014

SPD and the Singapore Management University (SMU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on 7 February 2014 to collaborate in developing and promoting best practices for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in Institutes of Higher Learning (IHLs) in Singapore.

Taking Responsibility For Our Safety

Taking Responsibility For Our Safety

14 February 2014

Workplace accidents can greatly impact the lives of workers and their loved ones, which is why we believe that investing in workplace safety and health (WSH) is one of the best welfare that we can provide our staff.

Getting Everybody Together For One Day Of Everything

Getting Everybody Together For One Day Of Everything

14 February 2014

It was Organisational Excellence Day, Staff Day and Appreciation Dinner all rolled into one as SPD staff from all three centres gathered at the SPD Ability Centre on 24 January for the annual get-together.

Welcoming The Year Of The Horse

Welcoming The Year Of The Horse

14 February 2014

The weeks leading up to the Lunar New Year is normally a busy time for many. We are heartened that in spite of this, many of our partners and volunteers took time out from their packed schedules to indulge in the festivities with our beneficiaries at SPD. Here are some of the celebrations that took place to welcome the Year of the Horse.

Take Up Social Work As A Second Career

Take Up Social Work As A Second Career

30 January 2014

Social workers are often one of the most sought after professionals in the social service sector. With an ageing population and rising societal challenges in Singapore, the need for these professionals has never been so pressing as in recent years.

Sign Up For These Events!

Sign Up For These Events!

30 January 2014

We have great events coming up in February. Take a look and sign up for them quickly!

Volunteer Appreciation Day

Volunteer Appreciation Day

30 January 2014

Last year, more than 5,500 volunteers comprising students, individuals and employees of corporate partners did just that. This translated to over 7,300 volunteer sessions or close to 22,000 volunteer hours given in service to SPD. In appreciation of their dedication and commitment to our cause, we invited our volunteers to a movie screening of Legend of Hercules and a tea reception at The Cathay Cineplex on 18 January.

SPD Education Programme Awards Bring Youngsters Closer To Their Dreams

SPD Education Programme Awards Bring Youngsters Closer To Their Dreams

17 January 2014

Samuel Lim may not be able to speak normally like others, but he expresses himself using a universal language - music. The 14-year-old, who plays the piano and gu zheng, was one of the two recipients of the SPD Youth Aspiration Award 2014. Over $76,000 in bursaries were also presented to 97 students with disabilities or have parents with physical disabilities at the SPD Education Programme Awards Presentation Ceremony at Traders Hotel on 11 January.

 

SPD Celebrates Occupational Therapy Day 2014

SPD Celebrates Occupational Therapy Day 2014

17 January 2014

SPD celebrated the 2014 OT Day with staff as well as people with disabilities and their caregivers at the SPD Ability Centre on 10 January. Thanks to the organisers, we got to know more about the profession through games and activities related to assistive technology and adult, paediatric and geriatric rehabilitation. For instance, one of the activities required participants to wear a shirt using just his/her non-dominant hand to simulate recovery from the effects of stroke.

Office Skills Training Programme In Its Second Run

Office Skills Training Programme In Its Second Run

17 January 2014

The IAC Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS) programme started its second run on 6 January with an orientation for the trainees and their caregivers. 23-year-old Chuan Chen is one of the 12 trainees who had embarked on this six-month training programme. Diagnosed with cerebral palsy since young, Chuan Chen completed her GCE ‘O’ Levels in 2010 at a mainstream school despite her disabilities.

Looking Back On The Year-end Festivities!

Looking Back On The Year-end Festivities!

03 January 2014

It was a fun and eventful month for our clients in December as several corporate partners visited SPD to celebrate the yuletide season with them!

 SPD Charity Hongbao 2014

SPD Charity Hongbao 2014

03 January 2014

Lunar New Year is round the corner and so is our Charity Hongbao project!

We Wish You A Happy 2014!

We Wish You A Happy 2014!

03 January 2014

The first week of the new year has come and gone. We hope you’ve taken your first step towards fulfilling your resolutions and wishes!

Message From Mr Abhimanyau Pal, Executive Director Of SPD

Message From Mr Abhimanyau Pal, Executive Director Of SPD

20 December 2013

A message from Mr Abhimanyau Pal, Executive Director of SPD, to all friends, partners and colleagues.

SPD Welcomes Dr Ng Yee Sien To The Board Of Management

SPD Welcomes Dr Ng Yee Sien To The Board Of Management

20 December 2013

We formally welcome Dr Ng Yee Sien who joined the Board of Management on 28 October. A distinguished clinician, researcher and educator, Dr Ng brings with him a wealth of experience from the medical profession.

SPD President At The European Union Human Rights Day Conference 2013

SPD President At The European Union Human Rights Day Conference 2013

20 December 2013

Human Rights Day is commemorated around the world every year on 10 December. To mark and raise awareness of Human Rights Day this year, the European Union Delegation to Singapore organised a half-day seminar with the aim of contributing to the reflection on Economic and Social Rights in Europe and Southeast Asia. Our President, Ms Chia Yong Yong, was invited to talk about The Challenges of Healthcare, Aging and Disability. We are pleased to share with you a copy of her speech.

Class Of 2013

Class Of 2013

20 December 2013

The first batch of IAC Certificate in Office Skills trainees celebrated the completion of their six-month course last week. In the same month, we also cheered at the graduation ceremony of four young EIPIC clients who will be progressing to mainstream primary schools and Special Education school. Their achievements made this year-end celebrations extra special.

Instant Confidence Boosters

Instant Confidence Boosters

20 December 2013

To gear the trainees from the IAC Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS) and Techwerkz programmes for job placement, executive creative director of Lush Hair Creations, Ms Janet Tui, conducted a hairstyling workshop to offer them tips to help them build a more professional image. She even set up shop with tools of her trade in tow and gave every trainee a mini make-over.

Walking Towards Inclusion

Walking Towards Inclusion

20 December 2013

Earlier this year, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) launched the InclUDed Movement, a nation-wide initiative aimed at encouraging industry stakeholders to incorporate Universal Design (UD) concepts in their projects. Put simply, UD means designing for everyone, taking into account the needs of people of all ages as well as people with temporary or permanent disabilities. The UD Parade 2013 was organised at the Sentosa Boardwalk recently to encourage greater UD adoption.

SPD At The Inaugural Early Childhood Conference 2013

SPD At The Inaugural Early Childhood Conference 2013

06 December 2013

SPD’s Development Support Programme (DSP) Tampines team, which conducts the “Identification and Classroom Management of Preschoolers with Learning Difficulties” every month, was invited to the inaugural Early Childhood Conference on 21 November to share with other early childhood educators the different learning needs of young children and simple strategies to manage related challenges in classrooms.

Workers With Disabilities Face Greater Difficulties In Job Searches

Workers With Disabilities Face Greater Difficulties In Job Searches

06 December 2013

For job seekers with disabilities, disclosure is a natural step that precedes a discussion for accommodation. However, with the low awareness among employers and the absence of legal requirement to provide accommodation, job seekers with disabilities have to carefully handle disability disclosure.

Colour Our World Purple

Colour Our World Purple

06 December 2013

Purple is the new black in the social service world. It is the colour that unifies the sector to raise greater awareness on integrating the special needs community and celebrating its abilities.

Help From Many ‘Green’ Fingers This #GivingTuesdaySG

Help From Many ‘Green’ Fingers This #GivingTuesdaySG

06 December 2013

One of the founding partners of the Giving Tuesday or #GivingTuesdaySG movement in Singapore, NTUC Income gathered more than 800 staff to volunteer 500 hours creating terrariums to raise $20,000 for SPD.

Hitting the Right Notes

Hitting the Right Notes

06 December 2013

The atmosphere at the Day Activity Centre last Friday was boisterous, mixed with some level of anxiety. About 60 people with disabilities, dressed to the nines, waited to go on stage to present their best vocals to the panel of judges, their peers, as well as family members and SPD staff who turned up to show their support for the annual DAC singing competition. Read on for the results.

In The News

In The News

23 November 2013

Read about the launch of SG Enable as well as the proposed revision to the public transport fares.

Videos Show How Students Support Disabled Peers In Schools

Videos Show How Students Support Disabled Peers In Schools

22 November 2013

Together with the National Council of Social Service and support from the Ministry of Education, the Infocomm Accessibility Centre had organised the Edu4AllSG Video Challenge in August aimed at increasing awareness of supporting students with disabilities in mainstream schools.

A New Partnership With NTUC Income’s OrangeAid

A New Partnership With NTUC Income’s OrangeAid

22 November 2013

This year, we welcome a new partnership with NTUC Income through OrangeAid, the insurer’s corporate social responsibility flagship initiative.

Community Outreach In Jurong

Community Outreach In Jurong

22 November 2013

SPD was able to raise awareness of early intervention for children with special needs with the residents in Jurong when we participated in the Home Improvement Program Residents’ Night held at Block 331 of Jurong East Avenue 1 on 9 November.

How Microsoft Word Documents Can Be Accessible Too

How Microsoft Word Documents Can Be Accessible Too

08 November 2013

Microsoft (MS) Word is one of the best word processing applications in terms of document accessibility. In this third instalment of the five-part series on e-Accessibility, Mr Ivan Tan, our head of e-Accessibility, shows how MS Word documents can be made accessible.

 

A Race With Winners In Every Team

A Race With Winners In Every Team

08 November 2013

IT giant, Microsoft, continues to make inroads into leveling the playing field for people with disabilities in Singapore and helping them fulfill their potentials through what they do best – technology.

Tips On Wheelchair Handling

Tips On Wheelchair Handling

08 November 2013

Having the ability to move from one place to another plays an important role in helping people with disabilities integrate into the society. Many of them rely on wheelchair for mobility and they use it to move within their home as well as getting around in the community to perform their activities of daily living. More often than not, caregivers will need to assist in handling the wheelchair if the individuals are unable to do so. Our occupational therapist Mr Ng Shixian shows the safe and proper manner of handling the wheelchair that will prevent injury to both the caregivers and its users.

The Role Of A Job Placement Officer

The Role Of A Job Placement Officer

28 October 2013

Helping people with disabilities seek gainful employment is what our job placement officers (JPO) set out to do. SPD’s JPO Ms Elizabeth Chua sees herself as a recruitment and career consultant for people with physical and sensory disabilities. Elizabeth provides some insight into her role as a JPO at SPD, and what drives her.

Intervention From Young – Qistina

Intervention From Young – Qistina

25 October 2013

Cheong Nur Faidisha Qistina was a timid 3-year-old when she first enrolled at the Building Bridges EIPIC Centre in Jurong in August 2012. Suspected as having cerebral palsy, Qistina needed assistance when balancing and even while sitting on a chair. We witnessed her improvement with the support of the Early Intervention Programme for Infants and Children (EIPIC).

Observing Basic Etiquette When Handling People With Disabilities

Observing Basic Etiquette When Handling People With Disabilities

25 October 2013

For those who are unsure of how to interact with and help people with disabilities, our occupational therapist Mr Ng Shixian outlines some basic etiquette to keep in mind.

Outing To The Singapore Zoological Gardens

Outing To The Singapore Zoological Gardens

25 October 2013

Animals in their books came to life for close to 50 young EIPIC kids when they visited the zoo on 17 October.

University Students Receive APB Foundation Scholarship

University Students Receive APB Foundation Scholarship

11 October 2013

Against all odds, three exemplary youths braved countless obstacles courageously to become role models for other students with disabilities when they received the Asia Pacific Breweries (APB) Foundation Scholarship for Persons with Disabilities from Ms Sim Ann, Minister of State for Education and Communications and Information, at a presentation ceremony on 4 October.

Celebrating Children’s Day!

Celebrating Children’s Day!

11 October 2013

The kids from the SPD Education Programme came to be aware of the heritage of Tiong Bahru when they explored the area with volunteers from the Freedom Adventure Club (FAC) on 5 October.

Skilled Crafts By People With Disabilities

Skilled Crafts By People With Disabilities

11 October 2013

If you are finding it hard to come up with that unique corporate gift or struggling to find a memorable present for that special someone, the SPD Production Workshop has the solution for you.

Appreciating Our Caregivers

Appreciating Our Caregivers

27 September 2013

SPD held its first inaugural caregivers’ event in September 2013. Senior social worker Ms Angela Chung tells UPDATES the rationale behind the event and the activities planned for the participants.

An Activity-based Approach To Learning For Young Children

An Activity-based Approach To Learning For Young Children

27 September 2013

Understanding the importance of early childhood experience is core to the development of early intervention programmes that are designed for young children who have disabilities or who are at risk of being diagnosed with disabilities. SPD’s senior early intervention teacher, Ms Yvonne Chew, elaborates on the AEPS curriculum model and how routine activities can be ideal learning platforms for children with disabilities.

A Purr-fect Charity Drive

A Purr-fect Charity Drive

27 September 2013

Maxi-Cash is raising funds for SPD's programmes and services through the sale of 'Fortune Cat' figurines.

SPD Welcomes Ms Chow Siew Ying To The Board Of Management

SPD Welcomes Ms Chow Siew Ying To The Board Of Management

16 September 2013

We welcome a new Board member at this year's Annual General Meeting in August. Ms Chow Siew Ying joins us with 16 years of public health-care experience.

Students Who Overcame Adversities And Exemplary Inclusive Employers Honoured At Annual Event

Students Who Overcame Adversities And Exemplary Inclusive Employers Honoured At Annual Event

16 September 2013

At Towards An Inclusive Workforce 2013 held at NTUC Business Centre on 6 September, we honoured four extraordinary youths with learning, physical and sensory disabilities who defied the odds to excel academically. We also paid tribute to organisations in Singapore who championed and provided equal employment opportunities to people with disabilities.

StarHub Empowers People With Disabilities Through Training

StarHub Empowers People With Disabilities Through Training

16 September 2013

The StarHub Empowering Race on 30 August saw StarHub volunteers partnering trainees from the first batch of Infocomm Accessibility Centre’s Certificate in Office Skills (ICOS) programme to complete six office administrative tasks within the shortest time. Held across various floors at StarHub's headquarters, the event offered the ICOS trainees, many who had no prior work experience, a taste of the corporate environment.

Running For A Cause With Exxonmobil

Running For A Cause With Exxonmobil

16 September 2013

ExxonMobil Asia Pacific's annual charity running carnival, 'Running for a Cause' took place on a balmy 7 September. Organised for their employees and families, the global energy provider designated SPD as the event's sole beneficiary for the third consecutive year.

Integrative Approach Of Development Support Programme

Integrative Approach Of Development Support Programme

30 August 2013

In this article, educational psychologist Lim Li Hong gives further insight into the Development Support Programme, an interim one where intervention is provided by therapists in the child’s most natural setting.

Towards An Inclusive Workforce 2013

Towards An Inclusive Workforce 2013

30 August 2013

Come join us at the Towards an Inclusive Workforce 2013 (TIWF) public forum
next Friday, 6 September, and hear from professionals from the disability sector how people with disabilities can contribute to the workforce.

Football With A Heart 2013

Football With A Heart 2013

30 August 2013

Singapore Pools, together with the Singapore Sports Council (SSC) and Football Association of Singapore (FAS), launched the second installment of Football With A Heart (FWAH) and SPD was one of the beneficiaries for the event.

‘Global Day Of Impact’ At The River Safari

‘Global Day Of Impact’ At The River Safari

30 August 2013

Staff volunteers from Citrix Systems Singapore Pte Ltd brought clients from SPD's Day Activity Centre to the Singapore River Safari over two days in August. Check out how their day went!

SPD President Honoured At National Day Awards 2013

SPD President Honoured At National Day Awards 2013

16 August 2013

We celebrated National Day with extra cheer this year. Our President Ms Chia Yong Yong was awarded the Public Service Medal at this year's National Day Awards.

Accessible Devices - Android OS

Accessible Devices - Android OS

16 August 2013

Since 2011, the Android operating system (OS) code named Ice Cream Sandwich started to gain popularity and has made its mark as a competitor to the IOS. In this second installment of a five-part series on e-Accessibility, our digital accessibility specialist, Norrizwan Rasip, reviews one of the latest Android mobile operating systems -Â the Jelly Bean 4.2 and explores some of its accessibility features that have been designed to accommodate users with disabilities.

SPD Clients Inspire Designs Of Greeting Cards

SPD Clients Inspire Designs Of Greeting Cards

16 August 2013

This year, SPD will be marketing the 'Back to Basics 2013/14' series of greeting cards which consists of 18 Christmas and Lunar New Year cards, specially selected to reflect the true spirit of these joyous festivals. Some of the designs are enhanced from original artworks by our very own talented clients from the SPD Day Activity Centre.

SPD Celebrates Singapore's 48th Birthday

SPD Celebrates Singapore's 48th Birthday

16 August 2013

Find out how we celebrated Singapore's 48th birthday!

Accessible Devices - Apple IOS

Accessible Devices - Apple IOS

02 August 2013

In our modern and fast-paced world, technology has invaded our daily lives to influence the way we live and interact with people around us. Many companies have begun to realise the need to incorporate accessibility features into the devices they develop. These features not only make the devices easier to use, but provide opportunities for persons with disabilities to gain access to previously unreachable technology.

DAC's First Arts Festival

DAC's First Arts Festival

02 August 2013

With miniature papier-mache hot air balloons suspending from the ceiling, 3D portraits and abstract paintings hanging on the walls, our Day Activity Centre was transformed into an art and performance gallery on 31 July. Welcome to our very first DAC Arts Festival 2013.

SPD's 2014 Calendar

SPD's 2014 Calendar

02 August 2013

2014 marks a momentous year for SPD as we celebrate 50 years of service to people with disabilities. In conjunction with our golden jubilee celebration next year, we are producing a desktop calendar with inclusion as its theme.

SPD Executive Director Calls For Recognition Of All Social Service Staff, Not Just Social Workers

SPD Executive Director Calls For Recognition Of All Social Service Staff, Not Just Social Workers

19 July 2013

There have been several reports recently about giving more recognition to social workers and raising their salaries. Mr Abhimanyau Pal, executive director of SPD, shares his views on the subject with this letter that was published in TODAY’s Voices on 17 July.

Conversation With Occupational Therapist Janet Pua

Conversation With Occupational Therapist Janet Pua

19 July 2013

25-year-old Janet Pua is an occupational therapist (OT) from the SPD Therapy Hub team. She joined the organisation in September 2011 after a year of service in a hospital. Since then, her job as an OT has taken her to voluntary welfare organisations and nursing homes across the island that had engaged the therapy services of SPD. The Nanyang Polytechnic alumna has worked with geriatric and paediatric clients with various conditions from stroke, spinal cord injury and hip fracture to cerebral palsy, intellectual disabilities and dementia. UPDATES caught up with her recently to find out more about her job and why she joined the profession.

SPD Marks Healthy Lifestyle Day With A Scavenger Hunt

SPD Marks Healthy Lifestyle Day With A Scavenger Hunt

19 July 2013

The SPD Healthy Lifestyle Day which took place on 12 July had a fun twist to it this year. Organised by the Technology & Vocational Training Division, the event took the form of a scavenger hunt involving the use of two popular social media tools - Facebook and Twitter

Veteran Mountaineer David Lim In Record-setting Attempt To Scale Mount Kinabalu In A Day

Veteran Mountaineer David Lim In Record-setting Attempt To Scale Mount Kinabalu In A Day

05 July 2013

In late August 2013, well-known Everest expedition leader, mountaineer and leadership coach Mr. David Lim will make an attempt to climb Mount Kinabalu in a day. David is also taking this opportunity to raise funds for SPD by making an offer to all organisations and corporates so that they can benefit from this journey.

Quiet Strengths

Quiet Strengths

05 July 2013

Mr Kamaruddin bin Ahmad was a diligent manager in a popular restaurant chain who often received glowing testimonials for his hard work and service skills. He was also passionate and active in sports. However, all these changed when he had to amputate his left leg in 2010 due to diabetes. On the evening of 21 June, Kamaruddin shared his story on ‘Between Us’, a live radio programme on MediaCorp radio station 938Live. He hopes to inspire those in similar circumstances to never give up on themselves.

Motivating Trainees To Breakthrough And Enjoy Living

Motivating Trainees To Breakthrough And Enjoy Living

05 July 2013

Touched by what he saw after watching the SPD Charity Show 2013 in March, Mr Richard Gavriel, director of Richard Gavriel Speaker Management Pte Ltd, had a discussion with his top motivational and inspirational speaker, Mr Jensen Siaw, who readily agreed to conduct motivational and inspirational talks at SPD.

SPD Goes Smoke-free

SPD Goes Smoke-free

05 July 2013

To encourage living healthily and to ensure that our staff as well as our clients and their caregivers are protected in a clean air environment, SPD’s management decided to implement a no-smoking policy at its premises.

SPD Makes Efforts To Protect Its Clients From Haze

SPD Makes Efforts To Protect Its Clients From Haze

24 June 2013

The Pollutant Standards Index (PSI) hit 401 at noon on 21 June, the highest ever recorded in Singapore. According to the guidelines from the National Environment Agency, PSI levels above 300 are deemed 'hazardous'. SPD got to work quickly to ensure that the health of all clients is not compromised.

Raising Children With Special Needs - Coping With Challenges

Raising Children With Special Needs - Coping With Challenges

21 June 2013

Parenting is a challenging task under any circumstances. However, when a child is born or diagnosed with special needs, parents or their primary caregivers can face with even more unexpected challenges. SPD's senior social worker, Mdm Junaidah Baharawi, highlights some of these challenges and suggests ways to overcome them.

Traders Hotel Embraces Inclusion

Traders Hotel Embraces Inclusion

21 June 2013

The spirit of inclusiveness permeates the corporate culture at Traders Hotel, Singapore, one of the leading international hotels off Orchard Road. It is an organisation where new hires are briefed about the hotel’s social obligations and the virtues of volunteerism right from the start of their employment during the staff orientation programme.

Assistive Technology For The Workplace

Assistive Technology For The Workplace

21 June 2013

Eloise and Chai Yoke are Techwerkz trainees at SPD’s Sheltered Workshop programme who were part of the SPD team present at the Conference on Fair Employment Practices on 20 May 2013 held at Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel to share about inclusive employment and the types of support available to employers.

25 Disability Sector Leaders Appointed To Champion Rights Of People With Disabilities

25 Disability Sector Leaders Appointed To Champion Rights Of People With Disabilities

07 June 2013

The National Council of Social Service (NCSS) appointed 25 leaders across the disability sector to serve as champions for the different needs of persons with disabilities in the areas of accessibility, assistive technology, education, health and employment. This follows Singapore's signing of the United Nations Conventions for the Rights of People with Disabilities (UNCRPD) in November 2012.

Volunteers Of The Furry Kind

Volunteers Of The Furry Kind

07 June 2013

Our clients from the Day Activity Centre get regular visits from volunteers who provide them with care and befriending service. However, they are especially excited when man's best friend pop over for a visit every month as part of the pet therapy programme.

Running For Love 2013

Running For Love 2013

07 June 2013

The PSB Academy’s Chinese Student Association (CSA) organised their first charity event, Running for Love 2013, on Sunday, 25 May 2013, to raise funds for SPD clients. More than 40 PSB students participated in the evening run which started at the VivoCity Marang Trail, going along the scenic Southern Ridges before ending at the HortPark. The 3km run raised a total of $1,200 which was donated to SPD.

SPD - A Pioneer In Early Intervention Programmes For Children And Infants

SPD - A Pioneer In Early Intervention Programmes For Children And Infants

23 May 2013

SPD is the pioneer for several early intervention initiatives for children with developmental delays. From June 2007 to May 2012, close to 830 children have benefited from over 2,300 early intervention therapy sessions that SPD conducted.

SPD's Campaign Wins International Accolade

SPD's Campaign Wins International Accolade

23 May 2013

SPD's International Day for Persons with Disabilities (IDPD) campaign has won the Award of Excellence (Gold) at The Communicator Awards, a leading international awards programme that recognises big ideas in marketing and communications. Design house, Quirk, which SPD appointed to work on the project, conceptualised the 'lending a helping hand' concept.

Bonding Through Music

Bonding Through Music

23 May 2013

The ‘Bonding Through the Magic of the Ukulele’ workshop was organised in partnership with TravelClef on 11 May as part of our regular Volunteer Networking Session to foster closer ties with our volunteers.

Help For Pre-schoolers With Mild Learning Disabilities

Help For Pre-schoolers With Mild Learning Disabilities

10 May 2013

Approximately 3,000 children in Singapore are diagnosed or are suspected to have some form of developmental delay every year. Early intervention support can help them overcome these challenges early in their lives so that they can integrate better in mainstream schools. This is the motivation behind the launch of the Development Support Programme which was announced by the Ministry of Social and Family (MSF) on 10 May. SPD is one of the three service partners appointed by MSF to run this early intervention programme.

SPD Executive Director Replies To Letter On Employment Of People With Disabilities

SPD Executive Director Replies To Letter On Employment Of People With Disabilities

10 May 2013

In response to a parent's letter in The Straits Times on the difficulties that his son faced when job hunting, Mr Abhimanyau Pal, executive director of SPD, highlighted the importance of job accommodation for an inclusive workforce that is sustainable in the long term. He also called for more assistance and support for both people with disabilities as well as employers so that it is easier to integrate people with disabilities into the workforce.

A Part Of Tiong Bahru's Heritage

A Part Of Tiong Bahru's Heritage

10 May 2013

Nestled in a corner of Tiong Bahru, one of Singapore’s oldest housing estate, is a five-storey building that is home to SPD for almost 50 years. Known to its partners and the clients whom it supports, SPD may still be a stranger to many, even those in its community. Hence, SPD took the opportunity to engage the neighbourhood and shared with them services that it offers to people with disabilities at the recent launch of the Tiong Bahru Heritage Trail.

Overnight Camp For DAC Clients

Overnight Camp For DAC Clients

10 May 2013

To promote experiential learning, foster social interactions and enhance social skills for the Day Activity Centre's (DAC) clients, several SPD staff and volunteers came together to plan and organise an overnight camp for them in April. Close to 30 clients signed up for the camp.

Soft Skills Courses Enhance Employability Of People With Disabilities

Soft Skills Courses Enhance Employability Of People With Disabilities

10 May 2013

Infocomm Accessibility Centre (IAC) has launched a series of soft skill courses to help people with disabilities seeking employment stand out from the rest during their job search. Sixteen individuals with different disabilities have attended the 48-hour training series over eight weeks. The next intake commences in July 2013.

Kowloon Club Walks For Charity

Kowloon Club Walks For Charity

10 May 2013

Besides organising a charity walk to raise funds for SPD, the President of Kowloon Club, Mr Philip Chan, also suggested that his family and friends donate to SPD instead of buying him gifts for his birthday and wedding anniversary celebrations last month.

Social Support - An Important Pillar For People With Disabilities

Social Support - An Important Pillar For People With Disabilities

29 April 2013

Many of us turn to our loved ones and close friends for support in times of trouble. However, help may not always be so forthcoming or readily available when we need it mos. Do you know that social support is actually a resource that can be defined, measured and cultivated? Social worker Benjamin Han explains.

SPD Therapists Present Research Findings To Improve Standard Of Care

SPD Therapists Present Research Findings To Improve Standard Of Care

29 April 2013

Senior Occupational Therapists Sharon Sim and Kajal Ray Pradhan, and SpeechTherapist Rajeev Ranjan, from the SPD Therapy Hub, work with clients of varying levels of disabilities.

No Barrier To Technology For People With Motor Neuron Disease

No Barrier To Technology For People With Motor Neuron Disease

29 April 2013

SPD’s assistive technology specialist Tan Chuan Hoh shares how with the right types of devices, people diagnosed with severe physical disabilities can also surf the Internet, engage in online games and use the computer.

Trip To Jurong Bird Park

Trip To Jurong Bird Park

29 April 2013

Mother Nature decided to play a prank by opening up the skies when volunteers from the Freedom Adventure Club brought 15 DAC clients to the Jurong Bird Park on 19 January. Nevertheless, it was clear that the wet weather did little to dampen their spirits from the joy evident in their smiles.

NUS Bizad Run 2013

NUS Bizad Run 2013

29 April 2013

The NUS Bizad community raised funds for SPD through its annual run held at the Kent Ridge campus on 12 January this year.

More than 20 SPD clients also participated in the event with help from volunteers from The New Charis Mission.

Making The Headlines

Making The Headlines

29 April 2013

Sighs of relief could be heard in pockets across the island as the Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam announced on 7 March that people with physical disabilities or their caregivers will be exempted from the new car loan financing restrictions.

Lunar New Year Celebrations At DAC

Lunar New Year Celebrations At DAC

29 April 2013

Volunteers from all walks of life brought festive cheer to the clients at DAC this Lunar New Year.

Regular volunteers from the Singapore Soka Association visited DAC on 17 January bearing delicious festive goodies. They also spent hours teaching the clients how to make Chinese New Year decorations with red packets. The volunteers topped the Lunar New Year celebration with a trip to Chinatown on 31 January, an outing the clients look forward every year.