Haircuts, manicures bring smiles to 200 elderly Teck Ghee residents

Madam Tay Seok Kim, 78, getting her haircut at void deck of Block 415, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10, on Mar 05, 2017.
Madam Tay Seok Kim, 78, getting her haircut at void deck of Block 415, Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10, on Mar 05, 2017. ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong taking a selfie with a senior citizen. Over 200 underprivileged seniors in Teck Ghee Constituency were treated to a complimentary haircut or basic manicure service.
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong taking a selfie with a senior citizen. Over 200 underprivileged seniors in Teck Ghee Constituency were treated to a complimentary haircut or basic manicure service.ST PHOTO: LIM YAOHUI

SINGAPORE - Before Sunday (March 5), the last time Madam Soh Beng Eng had a haircut was before the Chinese New Year.

The 68-year-old was among about 200 elderly Teck Ghee residents who were treated to a free haircut and manicure at a void deck in Ang Mo Kio Avenue 10 on Sunday, as part of a new elderly appreciation event held in the constituency.

"It looks so nice, and I've saved paying $5 for a haircut," said a beaming Madam Soh, who works as a part-time tea lady, of her new hairdo.

The event was organised by Teck Ghee Community Club and two voluntary welfare organisations, the Lions Club of Singapore Centennial and Foreign Domestic Worker Association for Social Support and Training (Fast). 

The residents were also treated to a performance by a choir comprising domestic workers from Fast.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who is MP for Ang Mo Kio GRC, was the guest of honour at the event, where he greeted and mingled with residents, and took selfies with them.

Centennial Lions Club president and Fast executive director William Chew said that such events are important as Singapore is ageing rapidly.

"Everyone (in the community) is involved. We are also giving domestic workers a chance to get involved in community work," said Mr Chew.

About 150 domestic workers volunteered at Sunday's event, spending their day-off giving manicures, haircuts and ushering residents around.

Filipino domestic worker Cherry Marasigan, 42, said: "It's nice to spend time doing community service for a change. It's worth it when you see the elderly smile."