- StarHub doubled sponsorship of Central Singapore CDC’s Nurture Programme from $100,000 to $200,000 to become Title Sponsor

- The Nurture Programme helps children from low-income families improve their command of the English language and boost self-confidence. With StarHub’s funding, the Nurture Programme will roll out a structured and comprehensive curriculum for the children this year

StarHub donated $200,000 from its StarHub’s Sparks Fund to the Nurture Programme (培育计划) run by Central Singapore Community Development Council (CDC) in a cheque presentation this  afternoon held at *SCAPE. StarHub COO Tan Tong Hai presented the cheque for $200,000 to Guest-of-Honour Zainudin Nordin, Adviser to Bishan-Toa Payoh GROs and Nurture Programme Ambassador.

This is the second consecutive year that StarHub has been supporting the Nurture Programme. It first sponsored the programme in 2011 with a donation of $100,000.

For students like Mohamad Fauzi, 11, the Nurture Programme has helped to give them a leg-up in school. When Mohamad Fauzi started primary one in Mayflower Primary School, he had no prior knowledge of the English language and was singled out to receive additional attention from his teachers due to his poor English grades. After his mother enrolled him in the free Nurture Programme, he can recognise words, read and even write a composition without additional help and, as a result, his grades have improved.

‘Free’ enrichment for children from low-income families

Mohamad Fauzi’s mother, Sazlinda Aman, came to know about the Nurture Programme when she applied for social assistance at Central Singapore CDC. As she could not afford to sign up her children for tuition classes, she decided to enrol them in the Nurture Programme as it was ‘free enrichment’ for them.

“I’ve definitely seen an improvement in the results and behaviour of my children. My 10-year-old daughter, Nursyazwani, was a quiet child with borderline grades in school. After attending the programme, her school teachers shared that she has improved academically and is also more proactive in helping others. It is really a relief to me that the Nurture Programme has helped my children in their studies,” says Madam Sazlinda, who has another daughter—eight year-old Erra Syazlinie—enrolled in the programme.

Title sponsor StarHub has always tried to be a socially responsible corporate citizen, believing that it is important to give back to the community in which they operate.

“We want to give disadvantaged youth, like those under the Nurture Programme, opportunities equal to what their peers enjoy,” says Mr Tan Tong Hai, COO, StarHub. “StarHub volunteers who have taken part in this programme have sung its praises, saying that it is also a rewarding experience for them in working with the children.”

“This is very helpful for the children, and I believe in paying it forward; the children’s smiles and eagerness to learn is remarkable and prove that they are smart; it really feels good to be an instrument of wisdom and kindness; it is a privilege to be a part of this phase of the children’s lives to impart values, provide guidance and help them better themselves; I like reading to the children and I love making a difference in their lives. These are just some of the positive feedback that our volunteers have said,” reveals Mr Tan. “And they offer a glimpse into the fine work that is being done by the Nurture Programme for these children. That is why StarHub is proud to be the Nurture Programme’s Title Sponsor for 2012.”

The Nurture Programme began in 2007 as an initiative by Central Singapore CDC. The aim was to provide children aged seven to 12 from low income families with opportunities to improve their English language proficiency and increase their self-confidence. Volunteers carry out interactive activities like story-telling, reading, and music and drama, to help the children build up their linguistic proficiency and confidence. The increase in StarHub’s sponsorship will enable a new structured and comprehensive curriculum called NurturePlus to be rolled out to beneficiaries later this year.

Prior to the cheque presentation, about 330 Nurture beneficiaries and 80 StarHub volunteers had fun at the Nurturing Stars Carnival held at *SCAPE. The carnival was jointly organised by StarHub and Central Singapore CDC to celebrate the hard work of the volunteers and encourage the children to continue giving their best in their studies.