Young Malay residents in the western part of Singapore who need help with their studies will have it on their doorstep through a new centre opened by self-help group Mendaki in Jurong yesterday.
The satellite centre is located near educational institutions such as the National University of Singapore, Singapore Polytechnic and ITE College West, in the hope that it will become a hub where students can come together to form ideas and create projects that address community issues, said Minister-in-charge of Muslim Affairs and Mendaki chairman Masagos Zulkifli at its opening.
"Given that Jurong has one of the highest number of Malay residents in Singapore, it is timely for Mendaki to set up a dedicated centre in this area," he said.
For the past five years, Mendaki has served the needs of young people in the area out of the Assyakirin Mosque in Yung An Road.
Mr Masagos, who is Minister for the Environment and Water Resources as well, said education remains Mendaki's focus as the means by which to improve the quality of life for Malays and Muslims.
"Our community is progressing well, but to ensure continued success, we should provide our youth with adequate support. They will contribute to our community's progress in unique ways and it is important that we create opportunities for them to unlock their fullest potential," he added.
Last year, Mendaki helped more than 67,000 people, with satellite centres being important hubs for residents to seek and get support.
Yesterday, Ms Noryn Sazali, 19, a recipient of Mendaki's Youth Excellence Award last year, entertained attendants at the launch with a violin recital.
Young Muslims from the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts and Lasalle College of the Arts also gave poetry and dance performances in a showcase of the diverse talents in the community.
Mr Masagos said Mendaki will keep working with other stakeholders to ensure young people's needs are met.
"Together, we will enable our youth to embody the 3Cs. Anchored on good character, (they will have) the competence to contribute to society and (have) a strong sense of citizenry to advance the greater good."