Social service: 1,800 programs, 24 offices, but “sob” stories galore?

ST_06.09.2014_1424867625 Kua Chee Siong/ ternet07/ Photo call of captains from the various national teams competing at this year's Asian Netball Championships, which starts on Sunday.ST_06.09.2014_1424867625 Kua Chee Siong/ ternet07/ Photo call of captains from the various national teams competing at this year's Asian Netball Championships, which starts on Sunday.

With 1,800 programmes and 24 social service offices – why do so many needy Singaporeans fall through the cracks?

I refer to the articles “One-stop portal to provide info on social services” and “Plans to bring social services closer to residents of rental flats” (Straits Times, Jul 26).

It states that “Social Service Navigator lists 1,800 programmes from NCSS members

“This will significantly reduce the time social service professionals spend searching for suitable programmes for service users, even as it allows us to address the needs of our clients more holistically.””

With 1,800 programmes and 24 social service offices operated by the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) – it begs the question as to why there are so many “sob sob” stories and issues about helping the poor and lower-income Singaporeans in the media?

For example (in just last two months):-

Don’t give too much help to the poor?” (Jul 7, 2018)

Workfare: Self-employed $8 cash monthly?” (Jul 7, 2018)

Support have uplifted the majority of S’poreans: Really?” (Jul 4, 2018)

ST: ‘Sob’ stories that never ask the ‘obvious’?” (Jul 2, 2018)

Pay up $80 means HDB rental increase by $110?” (Jun 30, 2018)

Inequality: Caused by ‘inequality’ between foreigners & S’poreans?” (Jun 29, 2018)

GST Voucher: Less money to less people?” (Jun 28, 2018)

7 children, but no ‘cash’ assistance?” (Jun 24, 2018)

Financial assistance: How ‘deserving’ the ‘criteria’?” (Jun 23, 2018)

ComCare: Friend’s help also counted?” (Jun 17, 2018)

Inequality caused by tax, labour, economic, social policies?” (Jun 7, 2018)

10 schemes help CareShield Life: 260k households earn below $2k?” (jun 5, 2018)

Leong Sze Hian

About the Author

Leong
Leong Sze Hian has served as president of 4 professional bodies, honorary consul of 2 countries, an alumnus of Harvard University, authored 4 books, quoted over 1500 times in the media , has been a radio talkshow host, a newspaper daily columnist, Wharton Fellow, SEACeM Fellow, columnist for theonlinecitizen and Malaysiakini, executive producer of Ilo Ilo (40 international awards), invited to speak more than 200 times in over 30 countries, CIFA advisory board member, founding advisor to the Financial Planning Associations of Indonesia and Brunei. He has 3 Masters, 2 Bachelors degrees and 13 professional  qualifications.