23 May 2012, 5.32PM
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong highlighted that self-help groups have a vital role to play in improving the social mobility of families. At the 20th anniversary dinner of the Chinese Assistance Development Council (CDAC) yesterday, he called on such groups to help ensure that families have the opportunities to move up the socio-economic ladder.
The CDAC was set up to look after the educational needs of the less well-off in the Chinese community, and there are existing groups for the Malay, Indian and Eurasian Communities as well. CDAC has been offering help not just to students from low income families with poor grades but to any student from a low income household, regardless of grades.
PM Lee noted that community efforts such as those by self-help groups exist alongside the Government’s programmes to create an inclusive society. He said, “How we fare as a nation depends on how Singaporeans respond to our challenges, individually and as a community.”
He also gave his assurance that the Government is doing its utmost to preserve social mobility, through GST vouchers for low income families and special schemes such as the Workfare and Special Employment Credit for low-wage and older workers.
Do you agree that self-help groups can aid social mobility? What other avenues can self-help groups explore to help Singaporeans?