Integrated centre to be built by social arm of Catholic Church

(From left) Ms Janet Ang, who chairs the Agape Village Steering Committee, Catholic Archbishop William Goh, Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing, Catholic Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia, and Mr George Lim, chairman of Caritas
(From left) Ms Janet Ang, who chairs the Agape Village Steering Committee, Catholic Archbishop William Goh, Minister for Social and Family Development Chan Chun Sing, Catholic Archbishop Emeritus Nicholas Chia, and Mr George Lim, chairman of Caritas Singapore's Board of Directors, at the groundbreaking ceremony for Agape Village in Toa Payoh on Thursday, Sept 5, 2013. A one-stop centre offering social services by several Catholic charity and community organisations will be set up in Toa Payoh in 2015. Caritas Singapore, the social service arm of the Catholic Church, held a groundbreaking and blessing ceremony of the Agape Village on Thursday. -- ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

A one-stop centre offering social services by several Catholic charity and community organisations will be set up in Toa Payoh in 2015. Caritas Singapore, the social service arm of the Catholic Church, held a groundbreaking and blessing ceremony of the Agape Village on Thursday.

The four-storey centre will have mobile offices housing eight of the 23 organisations in Caritas Singapore. Services including counselling, job training and legal aid will come together under one roof, offering a single coordinated point of assistance to the needy.

Executive director of Catholic Welfare Services, James Chew said close collaboration with charities was important. He said: "Coming under one roof at Agape Village will facilitate greater inclusion, communication and coordination."

Other building facilities include a multi-purpose hall, a thrift shop, a food bank and cafe. So far the organisation has raised $3.4 million of the $15 million needed. Those interested in making a contribution may visit www.caritas-singapore.org