GENESIS OF SG CARES
According to NVPC’s national survey on volunteerism in 2008, the volunteerism rate in Singapore was 16.9% as compared to 15.5% in 2006. Although the percentage has increased, volunteering hours has decreased from 49 million hours to 45 million hours. This shows that while more people are volunteering, they put in less volunteering hours or do so less regularly.
It was noted that people who lead busy lives still want to volunteer. They want to help the less fortunate especially if they believe personally in the cause and when they have been approached by someone or know of someone involved with the cause.
From the survey, NVPC found that the main reason why people stop volunteering is because they have no time. In particular, given the hectic lifestyle that most people living here lead, they have no time to source for volunteering opportunities nor can they commit to a fixed and lengthy period of time.
However, if there was more time flexibility or flexibility in volunteering workload, then they are more likely to want to volunteer.
Given these findings and also based on NVPC’s ground knowledge in working with agencies / volunteers these past few years, there was the need to develop an informative and flexible volunteering system that will allow people with little time, or those who cannot commit to a fixed schedule, to volunteer.
Singapore Cares (SG Cares) was conceptualised to enable caring but busy people in Singapore to volunteer as and when they can.
SG Cares is modelled after the successful practices of New York Cares (www.nycares.org) and Boston Cares (www.bostoncares.org).
SG Cares is an international affiliate of the HandsOn Network (http://www.handsonnetwork.org) and Points of Light Institute (http://www.pointsoflight.org), an international organisation which inspires, equips, and mobilises people to take action that changes the world.