What does growing up mean to you? Everyone has different answers to this question: more responsibility, more freedom, more things to manage, different relationships, journeys of self-discovery, the list goes on. Personally, it meant looking outside of yourself and searching for a sense of purpose, something that I loved to do and that helped make a difference, however small. I was looking, like many of us are, to make an impact.
Something that changed my entire perspective on making a difference was volunteering. It was an activity wherein I could devote my time and energy towards organisations made up of wonderful, like-minded people, looking to do their bit for the world. It was something that allowed me to understand and start working on causes that I believed in. NUS was an integral part of this journey. NUS as a university offers a myriad of opportunities to people who are looking to volunteer. Various organisations on campus, made up of students from different faculties, majors, nationalities get together and work towards making a lot of people very happy. Some of those organisations are:
Community Service Club at NUS does everything! I mean everything. They run RVPs (Regular Volunteering Programs) in sectors such as Youth and Children, Elderly and Intellectual Disability. Through these projects, you can set aside a weekly slot and go and do various things for people at different centres all over Singapore. You can teach young kids, organise sports events for them, colour and draw with beneficiaries from the ID sector or just go and have long conversations over Kopi with some very friendly uncles and aunties from the ID sector. If you don’t have time to do this every week though, fear not for you can take part in one of the Special projects that CSC organises. From “Grant A Wish” to “Paint A Home” take your pick and go make someone’s day :)
Find out more at: http://www.nus-csc.org/main/index.php
Red Cross Youth at NUS runs 8 different projects across a wide range of avenues and sectors. This group of enthusiastic people organises annual events such as I.Volunteer (an event for beneficiaries) and Project R.I.C.E (a project for the underprivileged), semestral projects like the Blood and Bone Marrow donation group and Project 7 Days of Happiness (7DOH) and regular volunteering projects like Disaster Management Group (DMG) and Project Smiles (for physically and intellectually disabled beneficiaries). These ensure that you as a volunteer can grow and learn in different ways while making an obvious and lasting impact.
Find out more at: http://www.nusredcross.com/
AIESEC in NUS:
For those of you who think volunteering is a chore and want to do something more exciting and adventurous, maybe something that will take you to foreign lands where you can work and take those Insta-worthy pictures (because we obviously want it all ;)) I present to you a wonderful solution. AIESEC in NUS is an organisation that can take you on Global Volunteering (GV) trips all over the world. It’s really very simple. Pick a destination, pick a goal you want to pursue and apply for a chance to change the world... Someone from AIESEC will get in touch with you and ensure that your journey, both literal and personal is smooth and without too many hiccups. And when I say take your pick, I mean it. AIESEC has sent students to places ranging from Egypt, to Argentina, to Poland, India, Cambodia, the list goes on… And a whole team of people will be in your corner throughout the entire journey, helping you with everything, from picking a project to getting your visa and making sure that your efforts to better lives, makes yours a little bit better too :D!
Obviously, NUS has so many more opportunities, with other organisations or projects that students keep coming up with every new semester (which will be impossible to cover in one article)! So, look out for such things and sign yourself up for one of them because a little effort on your part can bring a lot of smiles to life :D.
Find out more at: https://www.aiesecinnus.org/