Veteran diplomat Professor Tommy Koh ruffled Singaporeans’ feathers when he lamented that many Singaporeans are “selfish and unkind”, and lacking in civic-mindedness despite being such an advanced nation. He said this at a dialogue during the Singapore Bicentennial Conference, where he also commented that Singapore is a “First World Country with Third World people”, according to this Straits Times report.
Whether you agree with Prof Koh’s comments or not, we can all probably agree on one thing — that kindness, generosity and selflessness are important traits to have in any society.
And altruism isn’t just beneficial for the recipient; it’s also good for the giver’s body and soul. Studies have shown that volunteers experience “helper’s high”, which is that uplifting feeling from doing a good deed, and is similar to that sense of wellbeing after exercising.
People who practice giving and volunteering may even experience a wealth of health benefits such as lower blood pressure, a happier and more productive work life, lower stress levels and even a longer life.
In Singapore, there are so many great ways to give back to society and foster a generous spirit. If you and your family are planning on volunteering together, these organisations and foundations in Singapore are some of the best places to start.