PM Lee Hsien Loong at the SG Cares Carnival

PM Lee Hsien Loong | 13 January 2018

PM Lee Hsien Loong spoke at the SG Cares Carnival at One Tampines Hub on 13 January 2018.


Good evening everybody, welcome to this SG Cares Carnival. 

SG Cares was launched in November 2016. It was a national movement to support everyone who wants to make Singapore a more caring society.

It is a shared platform for individuals, businesses and organisations to work together to meet the needs of the community. Through SG Cares, people can find out about the many good causes in society; who needs help, what kind of help they need, how each one of us can do our part in so many different ways. We want to make it easier for Singaporeans to sign up to be volunteers, to donate, or to give back to society in other ways, because we know that many Singaporeans would like to help others but often we do not know how, or the best way to do that. That is why we are launching an SG Cares app today, which will tell you, give you information on the deserving causes that you can support, and the different needs in the community where you can make a difference and help. 

SG Cares also aims to reach out to more people, to affirm their good works and inspire others to step forward. More than a million Singaporeans are already volunteering, and we can increase this number further by celebrating the stories of many people, old and young, men and women, ordinary Singaporeans quietly helping others. 

Everyday heroes like Mdm Julie Tan – she is 73 years old, she has volunteered for many years with Presbyterian Community Services. She befriends seniors who live alone or have little family support, and she helps them to gain confidence to participate in social activities outside of home. Or Muhammad Afzal, he is just 22 and he volunteers with Youth Corps Singapore to help low income families. By organising activities, like outings to the zoo, tele-matches for families with young children so that they get to know others and make friends in the wider community. I hope people like them will inspire many more of us to contribute in our own ways.

Also important for us to know that if we work together, we can make a bigger impact. So SG Cares aims to get social service organisations, corporate partners, public agencies, and even academics to partner one another more effectively. 

For example, NCSS is helping social service organisations to re-structure the roles of volunteers in the social service sector, so that we can attract and retain a wider group of people who have varying amounts of time which they can commit as volunteers. You may be busy, you may be free, in accordance with what you are able to do; we will work out something which will fit your ability to participate and to contribute. At the same time, NVPC is working to strengthen corporate giving through the Company of Good initiative. NCSS together with NVPC, will match companies to social service organisations so that they can regularly and on a sustained way, volunteer and keep up the good work. 

Doing good for others, caring for the vulnerable and needy, deepening our sense of responsibility for each other - these will all help us to build a better home, where every Singaporean contributes to a caring society and in turn enjoys strong social support. 

In fact, this was how our forefathers survived in the early years to build today’s Singapore. Many of them came from China, India or the region, and even beyond to seek better lives here. They had to pull together to help one another, in order to make it work, in order to look after each other. Those who were more successful gave back to the community, by building hospitals, schools, mosques, temples and churches. Even those who were not well off made it a point to lend a helping hand to other immigrants who came to Singapore later than them. Everyone understood that they were stronger together, than they would have been standing alone.

It is this spirit that we hope SG Cares will help to engender a caring society where no Singaporean is left behind.

Finally, once again, thank you everybody who has contributed to making Singapore a strong society, who has participated in SG Cares, who has worked to put together today’s show and today’s carnival. I hope that you have all enjoyed the events here today and I hope it has stimulated you to think about volunteering, take that step forward and make a difference to your fellow Singaporeans. 

Thank you very much, indeed.