SINGAPORE – In 1970, Pertapis was started by a group of young people to provide community support to families in need.
Today, Pertapis has grown to provide various welfare services to over 8,000 disadvantaged individuals and families. Its services include welfare homes for disadvantaged children, youth at risk, former drug offenders and elderly in need.
To mark its 50th anniversary, the organisation launched a book, titled Nurturing Aspirations In Volatile Times, on Wednesday (March 24). The launch was delayed from last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The objective of the book is to record our journey and contributions to the community over the last 50 years, so that people will know and remember the organisation in the future,” Pertapis president Hussaini Abdullah said.
The launch event, held in a ballroom at Tanjong Katong Complex, was attended by President Halimah Yacob.
Congratulating Pertapis for its decades of community service, she said: “Your work is especially crucial now as Singapore tries to emerge from the shadow of Covid-19. The community needs continued support to ride out this difficult period.”
Madam Halimah also noted the organisation’s efforts to give young people from different fields – from law, to academia and aviation – the opportunity to contribute by being part of the Pertapis board.
“Fresh injections of talent are needed for organisations to keep the flow of new ideas, develop new core competencies and remain connected to all segments of society that you serve,” she said.
The book production was spearheaded by Mr Firdaus D’cruz, vice-president of Pertapis and one of the younger members on its board.
There are 1,000 copies of the book, half in English and half in Malay.
Some of the organisation’s recent milestones over the 50 years include the Drive for Change programme in April 2019, which saw 30 Pertapis halfway house residents sent to obtain their Class 3 driving licence. Half of them completed the course and have been gainfully employed, or are pursuing their Class 4 licence.
Pertapis also introduced its own counselling and care unit in September 2016, which provides therapy and family mediation, clinical supervision and training and consultancy among others.
Over the next 10 years, one of the organisation’s immediate priorities is to recruit people with technological expertise, so that Pertapis can keep up with the nation’s development as a sophisticated digital society, Mr Husaini noted in the book.
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