Seniors have always been the key beneficiaries of SMOU’s Lunar New Year festivities. Every year, SMOU would reach out to senior homes to invite senior citizens to join in the annual luncheon, and welcome the senior residents of the Jalan Besar community to celebrate the auspicious occasion at the Lighthouse Bistro.
This year however, with national measures still in place to keep the community safe from the COVID-19 pandemic, SMOU took the celebration to the seniors. The Union reached out to the elderly from the Jalan Besar Community, adopted Henderson Home, Jamiyah Home for the Aged, and NTUC Health Jurong West Nursing home with takeaway lunch, Hong Baos and goodie bags.
Visiting Senior Residents at Jalan Besar
To conduct the operation in a safe manner, SMOU officials and volunteers were split into smaller teams to deliver meals to all the recipients.
Gracing the visit to the Jalan Besar community was Ms Denise Phua, Mayor of Central Singapore District and MP for Jalan Besar GRC. Making her yearly Lunar New Year rounds with SMOU, Ms Denise Phua joined SMOU officials President Mr Rahim Jaffar, General Secretary Ms Mary Liew, Emeritus General Secretary Mr Thomas Tay, Assistant Treasurer Mr Tan Geh Ting, and Young SMOU Chairman Mr Dominic Yong in visiting residents and delivering meals and Hong Baos to their residences. Mr Chia Cheng Ghee, Chairman of the King George’s Avenue Senior Activity Centre, also accompanied the distribution team in the outreach.
The teams distributed bento lunch sets, goodie bags containing daily necessities, and Hong Baos to the doorsteps of more than 110 residents. This was done to help the senior residents continue to keep safe while celebrating the auspicious occasion in the safety of their homes.
“I am very touched that SMOU has delivered to me the goodie bag and bento set. I’m grateful for the union’s heartwarming gesture.” Mr Lim Ah Tee, 79 years old
“Thank you SMOU for organising this for the Jalan Besar Community! I feel very happy to receive the goodie bag and bento set from SMOU. ” Mdm Teo Ah Moi, 100 year old
Visit to senior residents at Henderson Home
Separately on the 18 January 2021, SMOU Assistant General Secretary Mr Gwee Guo Duan and Young SMOU Chairman Mr Dominic Yong travelled down to Henderson Home to hand-deliver the items to the seniors. 6 member and Young SMOU volunteers also joined in to pack the lunch packets and gifts, and distributed them throughout the block to 40 residents.
The teams were greeted with warm smiles and resounding “thank yous” as the seniors received the items from SMOU representatives at their doors.
“This was a good initiative from SMOU as it provides a good platform for the members to give back to the community. Getting to meet the residents and interact with them was definitely the most meaningful part of the event. The smile on their face when I hand them the goodie bag really made my day.” – Jessy Chua (Right), Young SMOU volunteer
Reaching out to Jamiyah Home for the Aged and NTUC Health Jurong West Nursing Home
On the same morning, SMOU Executive Secretary Alvin Cheong also headed down to Jamiyah Home for the Aged with gifts for the 126 residents of the home. Due to safety measurements, Superintendent of the home, Mdm Zubaidah Osman, received the lunch sets and Hong Baos on behalf of the residents.
SMOU also arranged for lunch meals, festive goodies and goodie bags to be delivered to over 250 residents at the NTUC Health Nursing Home in Jurong West.
Touching lives across Lunar New Year
Despite the odds, we are thankful that SMOU was still able to touch the lives of over 530 seniors from the Jalan Besar community and the nursing homes during this Lunar New Year period. Beneficiaries might not have been able to gather like before, but SMOU’s presence was certainly felt when officials and volunteers knocked at their doors bearing gifts and well wishes.
SMOU wishes every senior good health and safety during this period, and we look forward to a time when we can host get-togethers to celebrate festivities once again.