My time spent as an intern with Loving Heart is definitely memorable. Only a week into the internship, I was informed to work from home as part of the Circuit Breaker requirements. I remember feeling very lost, thinking, “What could I possibly do for the community while staying at home?”
Now looking back, I think it was a unique opportunity for me to play my part during the pandemic that upended everyone’s ways of living. Seniors in particular have been greatly hit in these times of isolation, and have lost their daily routines and social interactions. Time seems to slow down when we are confined to the four walls of our homes. Coupled with the constant barrage of news on the novel infectious virus, it is only natural to be afraid.
Thus, I am very heartened to be part of the team that checked in on the seniors living alone during such times of uncertainty over phone calls. With every call, I became more aware of the challenges facing individuals. A handful of the seniors also spoke at length about how grateful they were for the volunteers’ efforts, and how much they missed attending activities at the centre. This filled me with joy as I realised that our small bits of actions as volunteers really do add up. It also struck me that the Circuit Breaker measures were harder for those in the community who live alone, which made me appreciate my family’s companionship a lot more.
After the Circuit Breaker, I had the chance to help out with food delivery under the Meals on Us programme, as well as participate in a design-thinking challenge, Design4Impact, when we brainstormed for possible solutions to address social needs of the elderly. These experiences made me more empathetic to the needs of the community we serve. Managing the social media platform with the other interns was also an exciting project that tapped on our creativity, and expanded my experience in digital storytelling.
Loving Heart is indeed a place full of warmth and positivity, and I will look back on this journey fondly. Thank you to the staff, volunteers and fellow interns for being so welcoming, guiding me through, and supporting my growth!
As we navigate the new normal, let’s continue to reach out to the people around us, through a call or a text, to show that we care. Together, we can make a difference!