CareVentures strangers to friends
CareVentures – Strangers to Friends
Pilot programme designed to enable youth of all abilities to build friendship through better understanding of each other’s strengths and differences
Mr Tan Tee How, President of Singapore Scouts Association (left), and Minister Gan Kim Yong (right) presenting Mohammad Syahiran with a scarf for being the CareVentures Best Camper
Singapore, 30 June 2018 – For some 28 youths from Delta Senior School and ITE College West, the weekend at the combined camp at Sarimbun Scout Camp was more than learning the basics of outdoor adventure skills. They built friendships and widened their existing social circles.
The 2Day1Night camp that was held from 29 to 30 June 2018, culminated with a graduation ceremony where Mr Gan Kim Yong, Minister for Health and Adviser for Chua Chu Kang GRC Grassroots Organisations, presented badges to the participants in the presence of their families.
“It is important to organise activities and programmes that encourage our youths to expand their social circle and forge friendship with peers with different backgrounds and abilities. I therefore applaud the organisers and partners who have created the CareVentures programme. Programmes like this can play an important role in creating an inclusive society that embraces and respects everyone regardless of who they are,” said Minister Gan.
Under the guidance of Sands Leadership Development Centre (SLDC), an initiative by The Scouts Association, the group learnt tent-pitching, outdoor cooking, orienteering, knots and lashing, and most importantly, the importance of teamwork.
Surveys have shown that Singaporeans are generally apprehensive when interacting with people with special needs, and programmes like CareVentures will provide the platform to allow people from different abilities to meet with sport as the common language.
Mr Lai Chin Kwang, Chief of ActiveSG shared, “We wanted to develop a programme where all would have an equal opportunity to participate and experience living better through sport. In this journey, we allowed the youth to discover that every person is unique in an outdoor setting. There is so much they can learn from working as a team, especially when faced with challenges. We hope that this camp will create shared memories and friendships for years to come. I would also like to thank our partners ITE College West and Delta Senior School for their strong support. We look forward to reaching out to more institutions to conduct similar programmes.”
Dr Goh Mong Song, principal of ITE College West shared, “The CareVentures programme has enabled our students to engage in physical outdoor activities and pick up hands-on survival skills. It also provided a wonderful opportunity for the students to widen their social circle through befriending student participants from outside of ITE. It was endearing to see how the students of ITE and Delta Senior School came together to learn from, and, encourage and care for one another during the programme. I am certain that the team bonding and spirit among participants will be cherished.”
Ms Michelle Tan, Head of Fitness and Health, CCA at Delta Senior School shared, “APSN Delta Senior School is grateful to be part of this collaboration with SportCares and ITE College West. This programme has indeed benefitted our students. Not only did they pick up valuable survival skills, they have also learnt to communicate more effectively with mainstream peers from ITE College West. In the process, students were exposed to a number of challenging situations. They learnt to move out of their comfort zones and apply problem-solving skills such as asking for help. We look forward to future collaborations so that more students can benefit.”
Mohammad Syahiran Bin Mohamed Salleh, 17, from ITE College West shared his experience from this combined camp, “I felt like the other campers and I knew each other for a long time although we only got to know each other for a short time. In the camp, we had to guide each other along the way and although one of the students from Delta Senior School was timid at the beginning, he eventually opened up to me and we started talking. This programme was like training for me to be more confident. I shared with some of my friends here that if you take small steps, you can accomplish big things.”