Samaritans in Singapore: A friendship between a student and tissue auntie

Nanyang Technological University undergraduate Huang Zhiwei, 24, formed a friendship with two complete strangers - Ms Xu Wei Ling, 46, and Ms Wang Cai Ling after he decided to offer them a ride home. From left (standing): Mr Huang Zhiwei, Ms Wang Cai
Nanyang Technological University undergraduate Huang Zhiwei, 24, formed a friendship with two complete strangers - Ms Xu Wei Ling, 46, and Ms Wang Cai Ling after he decided to offer them a ride home. From left (standing): Mr Huang Zhiwei, Ms Wang Cai Ling, Mr Huang's girlfriend and an unidentified woman.PHOTO: LIANHE WANBAO

In the spirit of Christmas giving, here are some ordinary heroes who have made a difference to other strangers' lives. They are among 26 Samaritans whose heartwarming deeds were highlighted in a campaign collaboration - Good Man Good Deeds Good Rice - between Chinese evening daily Lianhe Wanbao and Tong Seng Produce's rice brand SongHe.

SINGAPORE (THE NEW PAPER) - Their friendship began three years ago, when he decided to offer a ride home to a stranger.

Mr Huang Zhiwei, 24, had walked past a woman who was selling tissue paper from her wheelchair at Bishan Bus Interchange.

The undergraduate from Nanyang Technological University saw that most people just ignored and walked past Ms Xu Wei Ling, 46.

He told Lianhe Wanbao: "I approached her and asked if I could give her a lift home."

 
 
 

Ms Xu, who has weak legs and has been selling tissue paper for four years, recounted how she was taken aback by Mr Huang's offer.

She told him she wanted to wait for her friend and expected him to change his mind.

But Mr Huang readily agreed and it was a good two hours before Ms Xu's friend, Ms Wang Cai Ling, finished work.

The trio have become friends.

Ms Xu said: "He takes me home whenever he is free.

"We also have dinner together and sometimes, he invites us on outings with his girlfriend."

Mr Huang said he decided to contribute more to the less fortunate after a mission trip with his church to Cambodia.

"I realised how fortunate I am," he said.

"You don't have to do anything great to be kind, but little acts of kindness can also bring joy to others."

Article translated by Elaine Lee.