Blossom Seeds charity raises more than $300,000 to renovate centre in Sembawang

Remote video URL

SINGAPORE - Madam Mary Rajeswari Singaram will be able to enjoy better facilities at an elderly care facility she frequents, with more than $300,000 raised at a charity event on Sunday (Dec 29).

The 62-year-old retired clinic receptionist volunteers at the Blossom Seeds centre at Canberra Street in Sembawang six days a week, where she teaches food recipes like nasi briyani and helps out in other activities, such as taiji classes.

Asked why she volunteers regularly, Madam Rajeswari said: "I see that some of these old folks cannot walk or take care of themselves, and so I like to help them."

On Sunday (Dec 29) at Safra Jurong, Blossom Seeds raised more than $300,000 to renovate its Canberra Street centre to include new facilities such as a gym, therapy rooms and food preparation areas.

It is targeting to raise $400,000 for the renovation scheduled to start in the first half of 2020.

Through its home- and centre-based programmes, the charity organisation aims to promote social bonding among elderly neighbours. It made more than 200 elderly befriending visits in 2018.

About 1,000 people, mostly elderly people from the Sembawang area, attended the lunch called Blossom Tribute to Seniors, including Sembawang GRC MP Ong Ye Kung, who was guest of honour.

Mr Ong, who is also Education Minister, sang three songs and raised $100,000 sponsored by Sheng Siong.

Other main sponsors included Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple and the Lee Foundation. There were also performances, such as by a choir comprising of seniors from BW Monastery with an average age of 75.

Blossom Seeds chief executive Ong Siew Chin said the amount raised so far was higher than its previous fund-raising efforts.

"The money raised will be used to improve the quality of our programmes, such as having strength training to prevent physical frailty and also to provide training rooms for volunteers," she added.

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.