Every individual deserves a dignified life; a safe and homely place to live in, support, care and love from family and the community. In reality however, many do not get to fill these essential needs as a result of complex factors that may be beyond their control.
The story of Andrea (not her real name) is a poignant example. Neglected by her single mother who struggled to make ends meet, she sought comfort in the wrong places – from taking drugs to stealing and playing truant. Her trauma was worsened by a neighbour who exploited her sexually. Andrea experienced deep loneliness and often ran away from home. Andrea was eventually referred to MWS Girls’ Residence, where she was diagnosed with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
When Andrea first came to the MWS Girls’ Residence, she was constantly in a low mood and experiencing traumatic flashbacks of violence and neglect on a daily basis. MWS staff took almost 2 months to gain Andrea’s trust.
Regaining trust in people was just the beginning. Social workers and staff in MWS supported her by helping her learn coping strategies and regulate her emotions. She discovered her love and talent for music, and was encouraged to enroll in an Arts Incubation programme. While the path to recovery is long, she knows that she is not alone, and expressed more hope for her future.
73-year-old Madam Saraswathy is another MWS beneficiary who experienced complex issues that she could not control. Saras, as she likes to be known, was a former nurse who gave 45 years to care for patients. While she has retired, the nursing role never left her as she became full-time caregiver to her ailing 94-year-old mother and 82-year-old husband.
When her mother had a hip replacement surgery, Saras was there to nurse her back to health. Her husband who had heart bypass surgery is also reliant on her for many daily activities such as walking and bathing. Being on call 24/7 naturally took a toll on this 73-year-old senior herself. Under the immense strain of full-time caregiving, Saras felt greatly stressed and totally alone.
When MWS Charis Activity Centre for Elders (ACE) opened below Saras’ HDB block in 2014, she decided to join as a member. At the centre, Saras is able to enjoy respite from her daily caregiving responsibilities, and receive emotional support from other members and centre staff.
MWS supports over 8,000 beneficiaries like Andrea and Saras who present different challenges and needs. Our priority is to give help at every level, whether they are young or senior, frail or isolated, individual or family. Our holistic and person-centred approach empowers our beneficiaries to take critical individual steps out of poverty marked by financial distress, isolation, trauma, illness, dysfunctional relationships or neglect. Your donation helps us to do this. On behalf of those we serve, thank you for your generosity and kindness.
Support a primary school child's school expenses for a month.
Sponsor rehabilitation for an at-risk youth.
Provide financial assistance to 2 low-income families for a month.
Contribute to 1 low-income resident's stay at a nursing home.