13 Sep New centre to inspire positive change in students
SINGAPORE — “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” reads a slogan across a wall at excITE @ College East, a campus-based youth centre that was officially opened today (July 30).
The youth centre, a collaboration between the ITE and Bethesda Care and Counselling Services Centre (BCCSC), aims to coach young people how to handle crises and challenges, and to turn every negative into a positive.
In a written address, former president SR Nathan said: “In this fast-paced world, resilience is an important attribute to develop… [the centre teaches how] to face difficulties with courage so as to overcome every adversity and emerge a stronger person.”
Since opening in August last year, the centre has catered to the needs of some 500 students.
Two full-time staff, together with volunteers, are stationed at the centre every day. excITE@ College East also works with ITE teachers and students to organise activities such as study camps, soccer tournaments and student leader retreats.
The centre has a three-tiered philosophy: ‘Community, Connect, Collaborate’.
In terms of community, the centre aims to foster bonds where the youth can build one to one relationships.
To build connectivity, the centre links up with external partners who can bring new experiences and help students develop positive well-being and prevent conditions such as depression.
The final tier – collaborate – sees students engage with various interest groups and activities facilitated through excITE@ College East.
In a video presentation, student Harun Rahamad shared: “I have learned to be less shy about talking to people I do not know. I have also grown to Mr Nathan said he was very pleased to see an institution of education set an example by partnering with a voluntary welfare organisation. “I hope that this will inspire more such collaborations within the education scene,” he wrote.
Following its official launch, excITE@ College East aims to double its reach in the upcoming year by connecting the student body with external organisations.
In the pipeline are collaborations with the National Institute of Education and Agape Holdings, a centre of excellence for organisation excellence, innovation and leadership-based best practices.
Extracted from Youth Section of TODAY Online, Article by Alexandra Dawn Westcott: