'Tis the season for giving

27 December 2017 | Community
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The Pack-A-Meal volunteers formed packaging lines to efficiently complete their goal of 80,000 meal packets

As the University vacation period began, groups of NUS undergraduates dedicated their time and efforts to play a part in making the holiday season a joyful one for some underprivileged communities.  

On 11 December, students from the NUS Science Volunteer Corps, in collaboration with Kraft-Heinz and international relief organisation Rise Against Hunger, hosted Pack-A-Meal. The event — a first of its kind in Singapore — saw some 200 students, staff and alumni sorting, weighing and packaging rice, grains and dried vegetables into a total of 80,000 packets of food meant for needy families in Cambodia and the Philippines. Each packet can provide food for up to six people.

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A volunteer with some of the Singapore Cheshire Home beneficiaries

Closer to home, on 14 December, a group of students from the NUS Rotaract Club spent a day with the beneficiaries at The Singapore Cheshire Home — a rehabilitation home for the severely disabled. The 18 volunteers organised a special Christmas celebration, engaging the beneficiaries in a variety of games such as Christmas-themed Bingo, sing-a-long sessions and art-and-craft sessions.

"The beneficiaries looked happy and this experience taught me to be thankful for the small things in life," said Clarisse Gan, NUS Business Year 1 student and one of the volunteers at the event.

At the end of the event, the students also gifted each beneficiary with an event T-shirt and a goodie bag.