Keppel encourages its employees to become responsible citizens with a genuine concern for the well-being of others. As such, employee volunteerism is a key feature of the Company's community relations programme.
Since its inception in 2000, Keppel Volunteers has been spearheading regular activities that make meaningful contributions to local communities, social institutions and non-profit organisations. On a monthly basis, Keppel Volunteers runs activities in collaboration with Keppel's adopted charity, the Association for Persons with Special Needs (APSN). These Keppel Volunteer activities have strong support from the Company, as employees can apply for volunteer leave should the event fall within office hours.
APSN comprises five learning institutes, namely Chaoyang School, Katong School, Tanglin School, Delta Senior School and the Centre for Adults (CFA). Keppel believes in not only providing financial support, but also playing an active role in the development of the beneficiaries.
In line with this philosophy, activities are tailored to encourage learning and develop the beneficiaries' social skills, so as to help in the assimilation of the APSN students into society. These activities include a trek across Singapore's Southern Ridges, visits to the Singapore Science Centre, Marina Barrage, Asia Dive Expo, Singapore Zoo and other venues of educational benefit.
To address the need to increase the employability of APSN's senior students, Keppel Volunteers embarked on a hydroponics pilot project at the CFA in early-2008. The Keppel Group sponsored the construction of five greenhouses, which have served as a sheltered workshop, as well as to create a stream of revenue for the Centre. The training provided by this project has enabled trainees to learn and develop skills in hydroponics farming, with the aim of placing them in open employment.
Keppel Volunteers also collaborated with APSN to revive a recycling project in 2007. This project allows CFA's clients to collect unwanted materials, recycle them and eventually sell the items at the Centre's thrift shop. Through this project, participants enhance their interaction skills with the public, as well as their teamwork ethics. Keppel Volunteers encourages Keppelites to be proactive in the collection of used items, as well as to assist in raising awareness of the thrift shop and boosting its sales.
Supporting the efforts of the Singapore Red Cross Society, Keppel Volunteers also organises Group-wide blood donation drives. This initiative is usually timed to coincide with the Christmas season as the country's blood bank usually faces shortages during that period. Hence, corporate efforts are especially crucial during this season to help meet the blood bank's needs. In 2009, the response from Keppelites was overwhelming with a total of 415 packets of blood collected in the four days of the blood donation drive.
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