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     FrontPage Edition: Sat 2 June 2007

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Home for children and the elderly under one roof opens

Source: www.mcys.gov.sg

HOME FOR CHILDREN AND THE ELDERLY UNDER ONE ROOF

The Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports (MCYS) will officially open its first residential co-location facility, Home@Hong San on 26 May 07. The 4-storey purpose-built facility comprising 2 homes, Sunbeam Place and Evergreen Place, was completed in May 06 and commenced operations a month later.
Sunbeam Place is a group home for children and young persons run by Singapore Children's Society. Evergreen Place is a home for the aged run by Singapore Amalgamated Services Co-operative Senior Citizens Home.
Both operators are voluntary welfare organisations receiving funding from MCYS (please see Annexes on the profile of the Homes).
''This is a milestone for residential care services in Singapore. Co-locating Homes for both children and elderly is mutually beneficial and synergistic. It will promote greater interaction between generations. The elderly will enjoy the companionship of the children, who will in turn, learn many lessons of life from their seniors.''
- Dr Vivian Balakrishnan, Minister for Community Development, Youth and Sports and Second Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts.
The co-location also optimise space and resources in land-scarce Singapore. In recognition of its barrier-free accessibility design which enables it to accommodate people of all ages and abilities, Home@Hong San won the Bronze Award for Universal Design for Built Environment presented by the Building and Construction Authority.
ISSUED BY:
MINISTRY OF COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT, YOUTH AND SPORTS

26 May 2007
Annex

PROFILE OF SUNBEAM PLACE

INTRODUCTION

Sunbeam Place, managed by the Singapore Children's Society, is a 72-bed group home for children and young persons aged 2 to 18 years who are in need of safety and protection. The home's design is based on a small group home concept, where not more than 12 residents are housed in each modular unit consisting of bedrooms, living and kitchen facilities. The objective of this arrangement is to create a family environment for the residents.

BACKGROUND OF SINGAPORE CHILDREN'S SOCIETY

The Sunbeam Place (former Convalescent Home), was first established in 1955. It then had a bed capacity of 80 and was situated at the old Nicoll Drive, Changi Road. In 1976, the Convalescent Home was relocated to Keramat Road to make way for the development of the Changi International Airport. In 2006, the Sunbeam Place was relocated to its present site at Hong San Terrace. There are a total of 55 residents as of May 07.

At Singapore Children's Society (webpage: www.childrensociety.org.sg), we help protect and nurture children and youth of all races and religions, especially those who are abused, neglected, and/or from dysfunctional families via the six service categories of Caregiving, Preventive, Developmental, Remedial, Community and Public Education. Today, Singapore Children's Society operates 8 other centres namely (a) Family Service Centre (Yishun), (b) Students Care Centre (Henderson), (c) Student Service Hub (Bukit Merah) (d) Youth Service Centre (Toa Payoh), (e) Roundbox , (f) Research and Outreach Centre, (g) Singapore's Children's Society-SGH Peritoneal Dialysis Centre and (h) Youth Centre (Jurong), aside from the Sunbeam Place.

Children's Society was founded in 1952 and this year, the Society will be celebrating its 55th birthday.

ENVIRONMENT AND FACILITIES

The concept is akin to a family set up. The smaller capacity and homely set up will allow the residents to live in an environment that is more 'normalized' compared to a larger Home.

The building has 6 apartment type modular units to house 12 residents. As it is a modular unit, it has the flexibility of usage, ie the number of unit catering to each category of residents can be altered according to the changes in needs without affecting the structure changes in the complex.

SERVICES / PROGRAMMES

Besides lodging and personal care, the Home provides a range of programmes that target at the residents' emotional and developmental needs. These include therapeutic programmes, educational programmes, social and recreational, and religious programmes.

FUNDING

Since April 1999, the Sunbeam Place has been receiving per capita grant from MCYS to subsidise the running of the Home. The children of the Home have also received free medical services from Government Out-patient Clinics and Hospitals through applications for the Medical Fee Exemption Card from MCYS.

The running cost of the Sunbeam Place is also supported by funds raised by the Appeals Committee of the Singapore Children's Society, sponsors and donors from the public.

Annex

PROFILE OF EVERGREEN PLACE

INTRODUCTION

Evergreen Place, a 102-bed home for the aged, is operated by the Singapore Amalgamated Services Co-operative Organisation Senior Citizens Home, which was re-located from its smaller premises in Telok Blangah to the current location. The home caters mainly to seniors above the age of 60 without alternative means of accommodation. Like Sunbeam Place, the living units are designed to be small to create a more personal feel. Each dormitory can accommodate a maximum of 6 residents.

BACKGROUND OF SASCO

The SASCO Senior Citizens' Home was set up on 21 Jan 81 at a HDB void-deck to provide lodging and care for the destitute elderly regardless of race, language or religion. It was registered with the Commissioner of Charities in the same year, and attained its IPC status on 23 Nov 89. It is also affiliated to the National Council of Social Service (NCSS) and is a member of the NCSS Charitable Fund. When the Home was first set up, it took in 10 residents from the now defunct Woodstock Home. The intake soon expanded, with the Home running consistently at its full capacity of 20 residents at their old premises.

The Home's occupancy has been increasing steadily since it moved to the new premises at Home@Hong San. Now renamed as Evergreen Place, the Home has 57 residents as of May 07.

ENVIRONMENT AND FACILITIES

Evergreen Place consists of fifteen 6-bedded rooms and three 4-bedded rooms located on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th levels. Each room comes with a bathroom and toilet with ramps and grab-bars. The main nurse's station and sick bay are located on the 2nd level, where the higher dependency residents would be housed. There are also activity and staff rooms on each level, and a roof garden on the 4th level. The main office, kitchen, security quarters and multi-purpose hall are located on the 1st level. The Home shares a basement carpark with the children and youth complex.

Recreational facilities such as exercise equipment, television sets, reading materials, and a reflexology path are also available. The Home engages the services of physiotherapists from the Society for the Physically Disabled who conduct a 2-hour therapy session once a week.

SERVICES / PROGRAMMES

Besides lodging and personal care, the Home provides a range of organised activities for its residents. These include karaoke sessions, board games and art and craft with the children. To meet the resident's rehabilitative needs, professional physiotherapy sessions are conducted at least twice weekly. To meet their spiritual need, there is a private prayer room for residents of all religions. Basic recreational resources such as television sets, reading materials and board games are also available.

FUNDING

Evergreen Place receives per-capita funding for its operations based on the prevailing norm cost and means-testing framework. In addition, residents may apply for the Medical Fee Exemption Card which covers medical treatment at government polyclinics and hospitals.

The Home is also supported by donations from its affiliates, volunteers and members of the public.

Source: www.mcys.gov.sg Media Release 26 May 2007

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