MSF is aware of an online post on 10th November 2018 about a family of 3 elderly siblings who have been living without power and require social assistance.
The Social Service Office (SSO), grassroots and community partners are aware of her case and have been engaging and supporting the sister Mdm C and her siblings since 2009.
- The SSO has been providing Mdm C, with ComCare financial assistance. We have also been working with South East Community Development Council, Mountbatten Grassroots and St Hilda's Community Services to provide various forms of help for the family. We had previously approved ComCare financial assistance for Mdm C from April to July 2018. However, she was subsequently admitted to AWWA Senior Community Home. As this is an MSF-funded home, her stay in the home was subsidised by MSF. She was discharged from the Home in July 2018 as she preferred to stay with her siblings, and she did not return to the SSO to apply for financial assistance. Her brother received ComCare assistance from January to March 2015 upon a referral from St Hilda's Community Service. We understand that community partners and grassroots had encouraged both siblings to return for further assistance, but they did not agree to do so then.
- The SSO has also worked with Singapore Power to restore their utilities. We are also working with South East Community Development Council, Mountbatten Grassroots and St Hilda’s Community Services to help the family with their utilities bills. St Hilda's Community Services had previously assisted to restore their utility supply in 2016.
- Mountbatten Grassroots Organisations have been providing monthly assistance from the Mountbatten Community Development and Welfare Fund to Mdm C and her siblings for differing periods for the past several years between 2009 and 2016. They also provided them with regular financial assistance, food vouchers and groceries.
- St Hilda's Community Services has been supporting the family since January 2016. They had provided financial support to refurbish and improve the condition of the flat. They currently provide assistance to bring the family members for their medical appointments. They are also helping the family with home personal care, such as a recent purchase of mattress to address problems with bed bugs, engaging Bizlink to clean the house weekly, and supplying the family with toiletries and other rations.
- Thye Hwa Kwan Home Help Service East provides the siblings with free lunch and dinner on a daily basis since 2017.
Together with grassroots and community partners, the SSO will continue to engage the family and provide them with the help that they need.
The SSOs stand ready to render help to those in need. However, there are instances where individuals or families prefer not to come to us for assistance, as was the case with Mdm C's family earlier on. Should they change their minds and decide to approach the SSOs for assistance, we will look immediately into the assistance they may require.
Building an inclusive and a caring society is a collective effort. We thank everyone for stepping forward to help this family. If you come across individuals or families who require support, please reach out to us at our ComCare hotline at 1800-222-0000 or approach the nearest SSO (www.msf.gov.sg/ssolocator) or Family Service Centre (www.msf.gov.sg/fsclocator).