This is a guide to all things at the intersection of Overseas Volunteering, Singapore and social change. Feel free to edit if you’d like to improve it!

Overview


See Overseas Volunteering Articles and Overseas Volunteering Events.

Key People


Names are in alphabetical order, hyperlinked to LinkedIn, else Facebook. Listing is based on prior experience in an area, plus a connection to Singapore in some way.

Andrew Leo, Anthony Skillicorn, Chan Yew Wing, Chua Cheng Chye, Dawn Soh, Farheen Mukri, Farid Hamid, Goh Ann Tat, Johann Annuar, Juliah Bee, Koh Say Yong, Lai Sheau Wen, Margaret Thevarakom, Oscar Ng, Raja Mohd Fairuz, Robert Kee, Satwant Singh, Tan Chi Chiu, Tan Tee Tee, Theodore Teo, Urs Jungo, Wong Yuen Lik, Yeo Sue Jan

International Conventions & Networks


The United Nations Volunteers programme is the UN organization that contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide. UNV contributes to peace and development by advocating for recognition of volunteers, working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming, and mobilizing an increasing number and diversity of volunteers.

The World Volunteer Web supports the volunteer community by serving as a global clearinghouse for information and resources linked to volunteerism that can be used for campaigning, advocacy and networking in support of the Millennium Development Goals. It is also the global focal point for International Volunteer Day every 5 December.

SG Networks & Associations

The International Volunteerism Association is an association of members that drives and strengthens good International Volunteerism practices through active sharing; and by advocating and developing meaningful service and learning.

Youth Expedition Project has been a key youth development programme of the National Youth Council that encourages volunteerism among youth 15- 35 years old to embark on community Service-Learning projects. It aims to nurture confident youth volunteers, who are socially responsible and active citizens, who can identify needs and contribute to the community both at home and overseas.

Expedition SG is a community of people in Singapore with an interest in volunteering overseas, including those on Youth Expedition Projects.

Other SG Organisations & Companies


Disaster


Crisis Relief Singapore’s mission is to bring love and hope to victims in crisis-hit locations in practical ways, with particular attention to the disadvantaged, women and children.

Mercy Relief was established in May 2001, in response to the human tragedies befalling mankind as a result of natural and man-made disasters. MR aims to promote a civil life of compassion, care and volunteerism amongst Man. MR strives to extend humanitarian services to all regardless of country, culture or creed. Its Mercy Overseas Volunteer Expeditions (MOVE) comprises two primary platforms for volunteer deployments: Mercy Expeditions for working adults and volunteers, and Mercy Youth for young adults and full-time students.

Health


Healthcare Expeditions International sends teams to underprivileged countries to provide basic healthcare and medical attention to the people who need it. Teams are mainly made up of students in medical and healthcare courses from colleges all over the world.


HealthServe is a non-profit community development organisation dedicated to serving the interests of the migrants, disadvantaged and poor in the local community, regardless of ethnicity, gender, language and religion. Its overseas programmes are an integral part of its social engagement, and they provide affordable all-in-one immunisation packages (I-Packs) to meet the medical requirements for those who are travelling to Asian countries.

Linking Hands is an inter-denominational, Christian mission. The main mission of Linkinghands is to mobilze and connect healthcare workers to humanitarian projects world wide.

Shelter


Habitat for Humanity Singapore is a non-profit, Christian housing ministry. It seeks to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world, and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action. Habitat invites people of all backgrounds, races and religions to build houses together in partnership with families in need. It participates in the annual Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Work Project.

Voluntourism


Eu4ria Inc is a voluntourism service provider, raising awareness through the implementations of workshops and sending different groups of people to undeveloped and less fortunate places.

TakeMeToVolunteerTravel is a member of TakeMeToAsia.com, an international travel portal based in Singapore.

Youths


Global Concerns is an organisation within UWCSEA that seeks to integrate an awareness of global development and environmental issues into the College's education programme. Global Concerns aims to increase students' awareness of these issues and to enable committed students to do something about their concerns.

Raleigh Society (Singapore) is dedicated to the development of youths through adventure-based service learning activities. Through overseas expeditions and local adventure projects, youths from all backgrounds and nationalities are encouraged and challenged to discover their full potential by working together on challenging environmental and community projects around the world.

Southeast Asian Service Leadership Network (SEALNet)'s mission is to bring service to Southeast Asia and to promote the spirit of service leadership in the region. Its founders hold the vision of a Southeast Asia that is more regionally united and internationally integrated. To work towards that vision, SEALNet continually builds and nurtures a community of service leaders who are passionate about social development in Southeast Asia.

General


Asian Journeys is a Singapore-based social enterprise established in 2002 to promote Asian cultural research and social programmes for Asian leadership development and community transformation.

Blessings in a Bag is an organisation: a Singapore, not-for-profit, non-governmental organisation that seeks to partner with existing communities, orphanages, schools, homes as well as initiatives to provide for the needs of underprivileged, abused and medically-ill children across Asia. Its Scribbly Friends project invites children to make friends with underprivileged kids living across Asia.

Blossom Training is one of the training providers recognised by the National Youth Council.

Ithaca (Singapore) Pte Ltd specialises in experiential learning methodologies for schools, community & grassroots leaders, government agencies, not for profit organizations & corporate organizations. Utilizing and inductive approach towards discovering ideas, concepts and issues, Ithaca’s programmes are very `hands-on’.

Mercy Teams International is a Christian humanitarian organisation made up of volunteers of all ages from a variety of countries, who are committed to living and working amongst the poor, with the aim of bringing renewal, hope and justice to those who are suffering and oppressed. Currently MTI’s Projects and Staff are located in Singapore (Headquarters), Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos and Philippines.



Operation Hope Foundation is a Singapore charity that owns the properties and assets, recruit the local staff and executes the programs with regular supervision from Singapore. Rather than donating money to third parties in the countries concerned, OHF will set up its own entities in the various countries and build, manage and own its facilities. In this way, accountability and soft skills can be implemented in a structured and disciplined manner.


Room to Read Singapore raises funds to support Room to Read programmes around the world.

Tomorrow’s Hope is a Singapore-registered society with its headquarters at the Lutheran Church of Singapore. It has operated an orphanage on the island of Nias in Indonesia, since 1990.

TOUCH Community Services International was set up to facilitate the delivery of crisis relief and community development services to communities outside of Singapore. It partners closely with local authorities and organisations of various countries in the areas of adoption of children, community development and humanitarian and crisis relief. It has initiated several crisis relief initiatives in countries including Turkey, Indonesia, India, Timor-Leste, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Sri Lanka and Pakistan. It has also facilitated several community development projects in various parts of China.

Vision Network Society seeks to nurture potential Community Development Facilitators through integral community development in Asia, provide garden therapy for HIV-AIDS patients, enhance rehabilitation through halfway houses, engage communities in environmental stewardship (natural farming, butterfly farming), promote urban agriculture (for food security during emergencies), and facilitate community development as a partial solution to Asian poverty.

X-Trekkers has been organizing overseas outdoor adventure programmes since 2002. It has organised a series of unique community service & adventure travel programmes, starting with Operation Shangri-La (China) in 2002 & 2004, and Operation Snow Lotus (India) in 2003.


Key Projects


2nd International Conference on Character Development in Service and Experiential Learning

AIESEC Singapore’s 'Make a Difference' (MAD) Internship Program is a social initiative for youth to develop and create a social impact in the world.

Bethesda CARE oversea relief work extends to Layuen and East Timor.

Campus Impact aims to develop and operate innovative programs that would engage young people, support their development as individuals and citizens, and partner with them to create change in their own lives, their communities and the world.

CityCare has a series of educational and humanitarian projects in the under-served communities in various parts of Asia. Through volunteer labor and monetary donations, CityCare aids in the construction of schools and shelter homes in different parts across Asia, as well as conduct cultural and educational exchange programs such as English summer camps and spelling contests.

Connect-Corners supports children in developing nations.

Firefly Mission is a humanitarian mission initiated by a group of Buddhist friends.

Generation Acts Club International organises ACTSpedition to South America.

Republic Polytechnic has a portfolio known as Service-Learning for which the team looks at sending students overseas for service-learning projects, as well as getting students to craft and execute local projects with voluntary welfare organisations.

The Singapore Volunteers Overseas Programme is the flagship overseas volunteer platform of the Singapore International Foundation, which enables skilled Singaporean volunteers to partner developing communities in need to realise sustainable development.

The YMCA Mandarin & Cultural Enrichment Programme, organised in partnership with Shanghai YMCA, aims to enrich its participants with holistic Mandarin conversational and cultural learning through a 7 to 10 day enrichment programme.

Youth Challenge focuses on both relief and long-term sustainable development missions, hoping to empower youths by creating opportunities for them to grow into compassionate, competent and socially responsible leaders of local and global communities.

Project Websites

Project Orion is led by 9 Rover Scouts from Singapore and Malaysia. The team contributed to the conservation of sea turtles in Setiu, Terengganu and was involved in mangrove replanting, repair work for the villagers and WWF info centre, English and conservation awareness education, and assistance in the local women's cottage industry.

Sok Dee YEP to Laos involves building a higher Rice Bank Structure in order to prevent the harvested rice from damage during flooding. The harvested rice will be sold to International Volunteer associations in Laos at lower cost, to feed the students & patients. The earnings from here will then be reverted back to the Ban Kern villagers to invest in their duck and fish rearing trade, hence helping them create a self sustainable trade and at the same time benefiting their fellow Laotians.

Project Coast 2 Coast aims to reach out to our neighbouring needy communities through service learning expeditions. Supported by Ayer Rajah-West Coast CCC.

To Xiamen and Back Water Conservation YEP.

The Tour of Hope project to raise funds for educational and healthcare support for the prevention and treatment of Cervical Cancer in Asian developing countries.

Lankan Chronicles YEP to Matara, Sri Lanka, to help the tsunami victims.

Videos & Publications

Guerilla Guide to Youth Expeditions is a project by The Choice Initiative, in collaboration with the Expedition SG network. This guide represents the collective knowledge of some of those who have led or facilitated youth expeditions.

"Overseas Giving: Should Charity Begin at Home?” article by Dr Tan Chi Chiu. In extending a hand overseas with developmental and humanitarian aid, is Singapore doing what is best for itself and the recipient communities? And what role does its government have to play in this arena?

Emerging Perspectives on International Volunteerism in Asia is a recently concluded report by Dr. Caroline Brassard, which looks at new modes of operation and challenges and ways moving forward.

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