A warm smile, a big heart

15 Apr

Do you still remember the time we requested for food items for our low-income families?

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I had always wanted to go together with the driver to deliver the groceries to the low-income families. I wanted to see the whole process from appeal to food collection and distribution.

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It was a hot Monday afternoon and on our list, we had 3 families from Metta Hospice Care to deliver the donated food items.

Our 1st stop: Tampines.

The beneficiary is a 40plus divorcee with 2 children, he stays with his mother and sister’s family in a 4-room flat. He does not feel well and stays in bed most of the time. Our driver explained the food items to the mother and a young chap carried the food into the house. I caught a glimpse of the beneficiary, he looks very thin, I can only see his bone structure. It was a heart wrenching sight. With a smile, we wave them goodbye.

Next stop: Marine Parade

The beneficiary is a divorcee living with her daughter and youngest sister, her daughter has an intellectual disability and is unemployed. The beneficiary’s youngest sister was reported to have mental illness and is unemployed as well. Upon reaching her unit, the beneficiary opened the gate, welcoming us with a warm smile. She was happy to see us. After explaining to them the food items they are receiving, they carried it into the house.

On our way to the 3rd beneficiary’s home, he called to say he was feeling unwell and on his way to the hospital. We were unable to meet him but would come back another day to make the delivery.

I went with a curious mind but after the experience, came back with a warm heart. I am glad to share that those donated food items you have donated to us, could help, in some way, to these low-income families. Thank you for your contributions!

We have conquer Hong Kong and back!

3 Apr

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Our journey began on 16th March 2014 as10 pupils and 6 staff took a flight to Hong Kong for a 5 days 4 night learning journey. After bidding farewell to the pupils’ parents who came to send us off, we went through the immigration and had our lunch at Burger King. The plane took off at 3.05 pm. and landed in Hong Kong slightly after 7pm. Everyone was excited and looking forward to the upcoming learning experience in Hong Kong.

Upon arrival, our tour guide Ms Catherine, took us to an Indian Muslim Restaurant for dinner. Our pupils were attracted by the performance at the restaurant and some went up to learn to play the drums while we were having our buffet dinner. After dinner, we had our check-in to Kimberley Hotel at Tsimshatsui (Kowloon). Our vice-principal, Mrs Liu, who took an earlier flight to Hong Kong to prepare the logistics with the Principal of the school, met us at the Hotel.

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Early the next morning, we went to CCC Kei Shun Special School. They welcomed us with a drum performance and we took a group photo together. After that, they brought us around to show us the facilities and activities of the school. We were impressed by the creativity of the school as every single space is occupied with the work of the pupils, and as we turned every corner, there are ‘surprises’ such as relax corner, gymnastics corner, reading corner and so on. The walls were decorated by the free drawing of the special pupils whose artistic potential was demonstrated. The pupils of Kei Shun School and our pupils interacted and made friends with one another as we gathered in the school hall. Metta School circus arts and sparks groups performed and shared the skills with them. We were taught how to make maltose biscuits and had a great time interacting with one another.

As exposure is one of the objectives of the trip, arrangements for our circus arts and Sparks group to learn new tricks from others were made. In the evening, we headed towards the famous Hong Kong Victoria Park to have a practice session with the Hong Kong Instructors. They were very friendly and willing to teach our pupils. Our pupils were so motivated to do better and to try new skills after the practice session with them. It was wonderful experience as they were aware that circus arts is cross-cultural, cross-societal and borderless among people anywhere.

On the third morning, we went to Hong Kong Baptist Convention Primary School, the school which invited us to perform, share and mingle with their pupils. The principal of Hong Kong Baptist Convention Primary School, Ms Wong, welcomed us. The pupils from Hong Kong Baptist Convention School brought us around the school and performed for us a song item and a dance item. It was lively and the atmosphere was so warm and friendly, and that our group was encouraged and motivated to perform with great confidence. After bidding farewell, we went for lunch at the busiest area in Kowloon – Mong Kok. In the late afternoon, we had the experience of riding on the ferry to cross the harbour – an unique and memorable experience for our pupils. At the Peak, we were amazed at the night scenery.

The fourth day was an exciting day for all of us after two consecutive days of practising and performing. After having lunch, we set off to Hong Kong Disneyland. Initially, some of the pupils were hesitant as they had no previous experience of taking the rides. However, after some time, all of them were having fun taking the rides. We were also mesmerized by the fireworks outside the Sleeping Beauty Castle.

On the fifth day morning, we packed our luggage and the pupils were guided to purchase some souvenirs for their families at the supermarket before setting off to Hong Kong International airport. We did have a good time in Hong Kong. This trip in Hong Kong was indeed an enjoyable, meaningful and fulfilling learning journey for all of us.

 

By Ms Dawn Tan
(article extracted from Metta School website, http://www.mettaschool.edu.sg)

Our 17th Metta Charity Walk cum Family Carnival.

1 Apr

w1It was a bright and sunny morning, we are honoured to have Mr Lim Swee Say, Minister, Prime Minister’s Office as our Guest-of-Honour to join us in the walk. After the Zumba warm up lead by our Metta School teacher and students., we were off to walk the new route with less traffic, more greenery and cool breeze.

Our Metta building and Metta School was converted to trade, food and kids’ playground for a day.

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We have dances, live band, songs and even prata flipping demonstration at the stage.

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Our 2nd level was a art & craft heaven for both children and adults!

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Our basement was converted to a children’s playground for a day!

 

Click at our official facebook page for more photos we took during that eventful day! See you all again in Year 2015!

 

Metta Chariy Walk cum Family Carnival 2014

22 Mar

It is happening this Sunday, 23 March 2014, 9am – 5pm.

Come on down to Metta Welfare Association (32 Simei Street 1) for a day of food to eat, things to buy, games to play and performance to see!

For more, click on to http://www.metta.org.sg/mettacarnival2014/

Camp I M Possible – A Reflection by Lim Xia Ling

19 Mar

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From 17 November to 20 November, Metta School Scout Group participated in Camp Possible at Sarimbun Scout Campsite. As soon as we arrived at the campsite, we were brought to our “A” huts, which was where we would be sleeping for the next 3 days.

Our first activity was to design our name tags. Ms Zaza told us that it was a competition but I did not believe her until the organizer told us. Joeina’s name tag design and mine were selected for the competition. It was like a dream come true. My design won first prize. After the competition, we went around the campsite to play games at the different stalls. The Opening Ceremony of the camp started later that evening. We sat around the campfire and sang songs. We had a fun time! When it was time for bed, I wanted to cry because I missed my parents.

The next morning, we went to the Gardens By The Bay where the most important thing my friends and I learnt was that “Dragonflies like clean water.” So if you see dragonflies near water, it means that the water is clean. We used a tablet and a code reader to scan and find information.

In the afternoon, we went to the Singapore Zoo. We watched 3 different shows but my favourite was the “Animals of the Rainforest” because I learnt about many animals. I did not like the Elephant Show because the elephants “did their big business” in front of us and it was so smelly. Nevertheless, I appreciate all animals because they are living things like us.

After dinner that evening, we had to share our reflections on the day’s activities with the cub scouts and the other extension scouts. Nabilah was brave to stand in front of the group to share her reflections. I hope to have the courage to share my thoughts aloud next time.

On our third day at camp, we went to the Jurong Frog farm. It was my first time feeding the frogs. The male frog is fatter and darker than the female frog. I hope I can have a chance to feed turtles the next time.

Later that morning, our group went to Bollywood Veggies. We planted a plant in a pot. The teacher who taught us to plant was Ms Zaza’s former school teacher. They took pictures together. I used the “cangkul” and “parang” to clear the weeds and plant fruit trees & vegetables. All the fruit trees & vegetables were organic. We then put the weeds into a machine to make natural fertilizers for the farm. We were also given organic banana cake to eat for tea break.

After lunch, our scout group & cubs from Poi Ching Primary School and River Valley Primary School played many different games like hula hoop hockey, sit down soccer, hula hoop chain and finding sweets in a plate on the floor. I did not want to play this last game, but since Ms Zaza was looking, I felt I had no choice but to get my face covered with to get the sweets.

The closing ceremony was held that evening. We all dressed up in different traditional clothes. I wore a pink Baju Kurung and we performed our “Chamak Chalo” dance. I was feeling shy when we danced but when the teachers said we did a good job, I was happy.

Before we went to bed that last night at the Sarimbun Scout Campsite, our scout group had a chit-chat session and light snacks. We all said we enjoyed ourselves and then went to sleep.

The next morning, after breakfast & strike-tent, it was time to go home. It had been a wonderful and happy Camp Possible!

for more articles, click on to http://www.mettaschool.edu.sg/index.php

Great Expectations – Finding Hope In Complementary and Alternative Medicine

3 Mar

In this continuing segment on complementary and alternative treatments, we extract the facts from the panacean promises of holistic and natural remedies.

Text: Flora Yong, Senior Nurse Manager, Cancer Education & Information Service,National Cancer Centre Singapore; Photo: stock.xchange

This article is reproduced from “A Guide For People With Cancer – Complementary And Alternative Medicine”, published by the National Cancer Centre Singapore (last updated in June 2006). Copyright © National Cancer Centre (S). All rights reserved.

Alternative Systems of Medical Practice

These are healing systems and beliefs that have evolved over time in different cultures and parts of the world. Some examples are:

  • Ayurvedic medicine: A system from India emphasising balance among body, mind, and spirit.
  • Chinese medicine: Base on the view that health is a balance of two forces called ‘yin’ and ‘yang’. Acupuncture is a common practice in Chinese medicine that involves stimulating specific points on the body to promote health, or to lessen disease symptoms and treatment side effects.
  • Homeopathy: Uses very small doses of substances to trigger the body to heal itself.
  • Naturopathy: Uses different methods that help the body naturally heal itself.

Manual Healing Methods or Manipulative and Body-Based Practices

Manipulative and body-based methods in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) are based on manipulation and/or movement of one or more parts of the body. Some examples include chiropractic or osteopathic manipulation, and massage. Manipulative and body-based practices focus primarily on the structures and systems of the body, including the bones and joints, the soft tissues, and the circulatory and lymphatic systems. These are based on working with one or more parts of the body. Some examples are:

  • Massage: Manipulation of tissues with hands.
  • Chiropractic care: A type of manipulation of the joints and skeletal system.
  • Reflexology: Using pressure points in the hands or feet or special tools to affect other parts of the body.

Pharmacological or Biologically Based Practices

Pharmacological or biologically based therapies in CAM include but are not limited to substances found in botanicals, animal derived extracts, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, amino acids, proteins, prebiotics and probiotics, whole diets, and functional foods. These include dietary supplements and herbal products. Some examples are:

  • Vitamins
  • Herbs
  • Foods
  • Special diets

A note about nutrition: It is common for people with cancer to have questions about different foods to eat during treatment. Yet it is important to know that there is no one food or special diet that has been proven to control cancer. Too much of any one food is not helpful, and may even be harmful.

Herbal Medicine

Herbal medicine is a booming industry. The use of herbs and plants to treat medical conditions dates back thousands of years. More than 120 commonly prescribed drugs are derived from plant sources. Cancer drugs such as Paclitaxel continue to show the usefulness of plants in anti-cancer treatment.

The interest in herbal remedies stems from the use of “natural” products and to avoid the side effects and toxicities of more conventional medication. However, “natural” does not necessarily mean “safe”. Herbs taken in wrong dosages or by people with conditions for which their effects are contraindicated can cause serious side effects and even death.

For example, ephedra (or麻黄 ma huang) contains ephedrine that can cause headache, dizziness, palpitations, and possibly strokes and heart attacks. The consumer must interpret claims made by manufacturers and prescribers of herbal medicines carefully.

The safety of many herbs is unknown. Healthcare professionals need to be aware of the growing use of herbs by the general public to treat various ailments. Individuals who choose to use herbs for specific ailments are strongly advised to speak with healthcare professionals in order to evaluate any potential contraindications associated with medication that they may be taking or potential side effects of the herbs.

Treatments Focusing on Diet and Nutrition in the Prevention and Treatment of Chronic Diseases

Much has been written about diet and its effects on health and disease. Alternative or special diets have evolved out of concerns about more and more people eating saturated fat laden foods, nutrient-depleted foods and diets high in protein and carbohydrates. The optimum level for nutrients is controversial.

The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is designed to provide a basis for evaluating the diet of groups, not individuals.

The use of special diets should not be taken lightly or undertaken without expert guidance. The potential for negative consequences always must be a consideration. Some examples of alternative or special diets include:

  • Vegetarian Diets: Focus on the practice of not consuming meat, fish or poultry. Some vegetarians eat eggs and dairy products. Research has shown that a properly followed vegetarian diet can reduce the risk of colon, breast, prostate and other forms of cancer, as well as heart disease and other illnesses. A 1989 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition reported that vegetarians eat more essential nutrients and absorb them better than non-vegetarians.
  • Macrobiotic Diets: Macrobiotics by definition means “large life”. It is based on the Eastern philosophy of ‘yin’ and ‘yang’, which is incorporated into all aspects of the macrobiotic theory and lifestyle.
    Taking responsibility for individual health through a more balanced, natural way of life is the goal of macrobiotics. The basic macrobiotic diet consists of 50%-60% whole cereal grains, 5% soup, 25%-30% vegetables, 10%-15% beans and sea vegetables, and 5%-10% fish, shellfish, seasonal fruits and nuts.
  • Gerson Therapy: Is a dietary programme consisting of large amounts of fresh, organic fruits and vegetables and emphasising low salt intake and high amounts of potassium. The goal of this diet is to produce positive cellular change through diet and detoxification. The primary principle is the balance of sodium and potassium on the cellular level.
    Food preparation is the key of the Gerson diet. Foods are cooked over low heat and with very little water. Cooking utensils should be stainless steel, cast iron, glass, porcelain or tin. Aluminium pots and pans, microwave ovens and pressure cookers are not allowed. Coffee enema is given for detoxification. Participants are expected to follow the regimen for 2 years.

Disclaimer: The National Cancer Centre does not endorse or promote the use of any product mentioned here. The information is resented in a summary to provide understanding and knowledge only. It does not recommend the self-management of health problems or replace consultation with your doctor. You should never disregard medical advice or delay seeking it because of something you have read here.

Contributors

17 Feb

Hey, are you interested to be our contributors?
We are looking for both English and Chinese contributors who can write articles about Medical and Disability care sector. If you are interested, drop us an email at events@metta.org.sg :)

12 Feb

Our updated Year 2014 Calender of Events. :)
Our coming event is Metta Charity Walk cum Family Carnival on 23rd March 2014.

http://www.metta.org.sg/mettacarnival2014/

The Metta Charity Walk cum Family Carnival 2014 has put together a carefully handpicked selection of treats and offerings that are “Made in Singapore” as its theme this year. Awaiting you are tantalising delights to taste, fashionable clothes and accessories as well as pocket-friendly electrical and household products to grab, plus attractive travel deals, artistic crafts, carnival games and many more! There is so much to see and do as you discover the best of our homegrown brands. Don’t miss the Metta Charity Walk cum Family Carnival as it will be a day packed with food & fun for all!

The event is organised by Metta Welfare Association (Metta) to raise funds for its less fortunate beneficiaries, while promoting family and community bonding and healthy living. Funds raised will be used towards supporting the development and enrichment of disability care, medical care, special education and early intervention programmes that are provided by Metta Welfare Association.

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6 Feb

Metta School School Song

4 Feb

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It was nearly 12 midnight. We just had an fruitful day of meetings and discussions. Metta School was having its staff retreat at Malacca, Equatorial Hotel from 15th – 17th March 2010.

Back in our hotel room, I was having a chat with the Vice Principal, and I mentioned that the school still does not have a song. Why not write one? Impulsively, I picked up the guitar, played a couple of chords and blurted out some words, ”In Metta School, where school is cool….”.  Mr Anuwar immediately jumped off his feet, and mentioned, “Metta means loving, kindness…”.  After a brief exchange of words and ideas, we finally had a skeletal draft of the SCHOOL SONG. Mr Anuwar quickly took out his Iphone, to record the words together with the melody, just in case we’re not able to remember it the next morning.

The next day, we gathered a number of teachers back in our room, to practice the school song. We did an impromptu performance later that afternoon in front of everyone, and the song was pleasantly received.

One thing lead to another; back in school, we decided to record the School Song in a professional recording studio….

And that is how the story goes.

sing along with us…Metta School school song

~ article extracted from Metta School blog

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