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03 February 2010

Christmas holds a very special meaning for all believers in Christ and we very well know why. While the rest of the world goes shopping for ‘Xmas’ presents, as children of God we take time to reflect on His majesty, goodness, birth and sacrifice. We also remember that during this festive season, the less fortunate people out there need to experience this Christmas warmth too.

In an article in TODAY newspaper last year, I read that the Salvation Army needed more bell ringers to stand by the kettling pots outside shopping centres. To me, fewer kettling pots simply meant less money for the needy; it was something sad to even think about.

I decided I could volunteer my time and asked around if any of my friends were interested. At the end of this short exercise I managed to get my best friend on board with me.

Last year, we did about three kettling sessions together at Bishan Junction 8 and Suntec City. This year, we completed another three evenings outside Far East Plaza. Because of a work attachment overseas, we could not volunteer for more slots.

Kettling is not a daunting task at all. There are people I know who want to volunteer but feel shy about doing so. These are some things my best friend and I do:

  • ring the bell,
  • smile at passers by,
  • assist the public whenever needed (giving direction, pose for photos with curious passersby),
  • explain what kettling is,
  • thank donors when they drop in their money and
  • enjoy ourselves! (we had the wonderful company of an adorable stray ginger cat this year)
I may not be a regular volunteer in any non-profit organisation but I am not about to feel inferior and give up an opportunity like kettling to help somebody in need. Come next year, the next and the next, you’ll definitely see my best friend and me kettling in the streets of Singapore!

~ Poh Choo