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21 July 2010

Sunday may be a day of rest, relaxation and fun for most, but Lynn White and her family have no qualms about foregoing it for a meaningful cause. On the 27th and 28th of June (Sunday and Monday), Lynn, together with her husband David, daughter Jessica and Jessica’s friend Brittany Klein, lent a helping hand to a senior beneficiary of The Salvation Army’s Family Support Services (FSS) by cleaning and repainting his home in Redhill.
Lynn is a member of the Australian and New Zealand Association (ANZA), a group that facilitates friendship and support within the community of Australian and New Zealand families in Singapore and which, within their 11-year partnership with The Salvation Army, has increased their community involvement in recent years.
It was through ANZA that Lynn, a cardiac technologist, began her frequent voluntary work with FSS. On top of her monthly involvement in the FSS’ food distribution programme, at which her family also helps occasionally, she has also dedicated her time to fundraisers and events like Coffee Morning and Mahjong Morning for the elderly, just to list a few examples.
“(The FSS) is fantastic in coming up with different ideas. The staff are very friendly and open to suggestions,” Lynn remarked. When she found out about the elderlys’ plight through the FSS, she roped in her family to help because the idea of “doing something nice” for someone in need appealed to her. “It’s a form of family bonding,” she added, “and it’s something we’ll look back on and talk about in the future.”
David, a marketing advisor, who was posted to Singapore by his company in 2000, shared his wife’s views. “It’s nice to find occasions where [family members’] interests meet,” he commented, noting that teenagers start to drift apart from their families as they grow older. Hence, volunteering as a family afforded the White family the opportunity to spend quality time together in a meaningful way, an experience which Jessica described as “rewarding”.
In addition, through volunteering as a family, parents are able to set an example and impart the value of community service to their children. Lynn’s parents had always been active in such work and had encouraged her to do the same, she recalled, and she has done the same with her children, getting Jessica and elder brother Richard involved in various projects. Brittany’s mum runs a charity and has organised a fundraiser for a Cambodian orphanage and this spirit of giving has evidently rubbed off on her daughter.
“When you make the effort, it feels good and you get a lot out of it,” summed up David.