2010 was a blessed year for us as the economy made rapid progress from the global recession from the previous year. However, we are indeed heartened that despite the volatile economy ahead, many of regular donors and sponsors stood firm and had never relented as our pillars of support.
With a boost in our resources and funds, we were able to reach out to more beneficiaries providing them with better services and facilities.
Caring For Our Clients
In June 2010, we officially opened a second preschool in Punggol with a capacity to care for 132 children and to help more young children with special needs through our early intervention programmes. In all, Metta is now able to provide a broad spectrum of services for 1,000 clients across 9 centres.
These would not have been possible without the support and cooperation from the Ministry of Community Development, Youth and Sports, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health and National Council of Social Service.
As for Metta School, we have commenced the construction of the annexe building in June 2011 to increase its capacity to provide more facilities for our special needs students’ use.
Looking forward, we are enhancing our outreach and services to the Metta School’s graduates, including an employment support centre, so that they can continue to receive assistance.
However, it would not have been possible for us to make this huge leap forward without the support from Temasek Cares, which will be pledging $150,000 towards this ‘Employment Support Center for 2 years. We are extremely grateful for their support.
We are also expanding our exclusive in-house brand, Arts@Metta which aims to equip special needs youths with life skills that promote integration, independence and employment. With the assistance and recommendation of Community Chest, we managed to acquire a retail unit at Suntec City Mall to display the products done by our alumni youths for sale and also conduct art demonstrations and batik painting workshops.
Another supporting friend of ours is biopharmaceuticals supplier Baxter Healthcare (Asia) Pte Ltd, which had adopted Arts@Metta as part of their corporate social responsibility initiative. Given these resources to work with, we are confident that we will be able reap good yields from our efforts.
Apart from our growth in the education sector, the Metta Day Rehabilitation Centre had recently upgraded its facilities and equipments and completed a major renovation in July 2011, the first in 10 years with our own funds. Besides reconstructing the centre, we also bought numerous new exercise equipments to assist our clients in their physiological therapies.
Having come so far, we are extremely grateful to receive support from our numerous donors, sponsors and CSR partners, as we would not have managed if not for their encouragement, participation and generosity.
We are especially heartened by the display of strong support from the volunteers of Standard Chartered Bank, Singapore Pools, Land Transport Authority Singapore, XL Insurance and Siemens Pte Ltd who took time off their busy schedules to organise activities for our beneficiaries.
High Standard Of Governance
Being an Institute of Public Character, we are constantly required to ensure a high standard of governance, fund-raising practice and financial accountability. To maintain our quality benchmarks, we will continue to update our ISO certification and the requirements of the revised Code of Governance. Likewise, our financial report is prepared in accordance to the new Charities Accounting Standard. We hope this would enhance the trust in our various stakeholders and public confidence in us.
As for the administrative end, we have upgraded our systems to enhance their accountability and transparency. The new systems, Exchequer and CHARMS, will facilitate accounting works for our organisation, while allowing higher level of transparency for our donors and clients through the systems’ integration. With these cost-effective implementations, we believe the productivity will increase in our operations. Thus, we hope our logistical efforts would establish a stronger faith in us among our clients and stakeholders.
Furthermore, noting the necessity of being visible on the virtual platform as the masses are fast becoming reliant on online information, we have made a bold move forward to elevate Metta to a new arena. Hence, to enable a wider outreach, we are in the process of revamping our corporate website and embarking on the social media networks such as Facebook and an online blog. The upgraded systems will also value-add to our endeavours in the social media sphere.
Needless to say, we do not forget our friendships with the various grassroots organisations we have been working with. To maintain our close working relations, we will continue to partake in their various activities and programmes. We appreciate the strong cooperation and support from this group of people as they have helped make the provision of our services more relevant to the community.
I would like to convey my sincerest thanks to the members of the Management Committee and the various committees for their counsel and guidance, numerous volunteers for their time and efforts, and staff who work tirelessly to achieve the organisation’s mission.
With Triple Gems’ blessings,
Venerable Shi Fa Zhao BBM