Mercy Relief (MR) embarked towards its vision in sustaining the spirit of serving amongst its volunteers through the launch of its first ‘Clansmen Workshop’ today.

The ‘Clansmen Workshop’ is a structured training programme to equip the volunteers with relevant information, skills and knowledge which would help them gain insight and increase their capacity in the humanitarian sector. The pioneer batch of 66 volunteers, enlisted as Clansmen, kick-started their journey with ‘Rites of Passage’ (Volunteer Orientation) where they were introduced to the philosophies of the Tribe and virtues of the Clan. At the Initiation segment, the Clansmen took the Oath of Service and pledged their continued commitment to the humanitarian cause.

The Clansmen also adopted the Clansmen Code, and embraced the Clansmen Crest – characterised by three cardinal virtues: Courage (to sacrifice), Compassion (to serve) and Conviction (to continue) –which was launched by Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean at last December’s International Volunteers Day observance.

 

(left) Clansmen took the Oath of Service to officially stamp on their commitment to serve the cause, led by the Clansmen Coordinator, and witnessed by MR Chief Executive Hassan Ahmad and Head of Corporate Outreach & Resource Pi Kuang.

(right) A Clansmen Kit was presented by MR CE Hassan Ahmad to guide Clansmen through their volunteering journey.

 

A structured training Workshop has been developed to provide a platform for Clansmen to understand the mechanics and gain relevant information about the humanitarian sector.

Witnessing the initiation of the 66 Clansmen was MR Chief Executive Hassan Ahmad, who shared, “Given MR’s wide geographical coverage of operations, and addressing an extensive range of pressing humanitarian issues, human resource is key to achieving MR’s operational goals.  As natural disasters increase in frequency, the capacity of responders must increase proportionately and continuously.  Hence, we are striving to bolster the capacity and commitment of our Clansmen.  Through the Clansmen training programme, we hope to see that volunteering becomes a fundamental part of our Clansmen’s character and customs rather than it being a mere fashionable concept.”

The strengthening of the Clansmen’s pool is highly critical as it comes at a time when MR is bracing itself for a larger regional role.  MR has been part of the regional Civil Society Organisation (CSO) community which is in the advanced stages of discussions with the ASEAN, on the possible cooperation between governments and NGOs to provide an allied and synchronised approach to address key areas of disaster management.  The proposal includes practical actions to assist ASEAN Member States in relation to disaster risk reduction, preparedness, prevention and reaching out to ASEAN communities to instill a culture of resilience.  Other areas of possibly cooperation are in training, knowledge management, resource mobilization, and further strengthening collaborative and consultative mechanisms at the regional level.

 

MR CE Hassan Ahmad represented the Singaporean NGO at the ASEAN Committee for Disaster Management and Civil Society Organisation Partnership Dialogue in Bangkok last month.

The Clansmen Workshop took place alongside MR’s public event, held at the Bugis+, under its signature local outreach programme – Cultivating the Grateful and Gracious Spirit(CGGS)*, which has run since 2008.  The theme for CGGS 2013 is ‘Step Out, Stem In Volunteerism’,  which calls on Singaporeans to express their care and impress the volunteering spirit upon their souls.

 

A 2-day public event was held to kick-start MR’s CGGS programme for 2013 under the theme ‘Step Out, Stem In Volunteerism’ which encourages more Singaporeans to break through their own barriers and imprint the volunteering spirit upon their souls.

 

* The CGGS programme seeks to acquaint Singaporeans with the nation’s acts of compassion and its Asian neighbours’ resilience in times of regional crises, through a photo exhibition which includes first-hand images of devastated homes, distressed communities, relief responses, selfless giving and human bonding.  Homegrown technological innovations, appropriate for disaster relief and rural applications, are also displayed for public viewing and testing. 

About Mercy Relief

Mercy Relief is a Singaporean humanitarian organisation which engages in both disaster relief and sustainable development programmes. It was established in 2003 as an independent non-governmental humanitarian charity responding to the human tragedies in Asia. Mercy Relief’s aid programme focuses on providing timely and effective assistance to disaster-stricken communities and has maintained the delivery of emergency aid within 72 hours from the point of appeal for assistance.  

In the past 12 years, Mercy Relief has disbursed over S$32 million in aid across 40 disaster relief and 53 sustainable development initiatives. Mercy Relief has impacted an aggregate of 2 million lives in 24 countries and areas, namely Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, DPR Korea, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, the Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal,  Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Yemen.

For more information, you may call us at 6514 6322 or email corporateaffairs@mercyrelief.org