Happenings, News

MWS Programmes Director gets award from President Nathan

Joyce Tan honoured for outstanding contributions to social services

MS JOYCE TAN SWEE YEE, Director of Programmes at the Methodist Welfare Services (MWS), has received the Outstanding Social Worker Award 2004 (Merit) from President S. R. Nathan for her outstanding contributions made in social services.

A veteran of more than 25 years as a social work professional, of which 10 years went towards helping patients suffering from mental illnesses, Ms Tan was described in the citation read at the Istana ceremony on May 24, 2005, as “ a gentle and unassuming lady with a fiery passion and resilient spirit”.

Her fervent pursuit of organisational excellence has led her to constantly drive new initiatives in raising the standards of social service programmes at her workplace.

To improve the standards of service delivery among social service professionals and volunteers, she has participated in consultation work with the National Council of Social Service for the development of a General Guide on Case Management for Voluntary Welfare Organisations (VWO), and training roadmaps for VWO managers and programme executives.

For someone who has demonstrated drive, leadership and professionalism in her practice, Ms Tan provides an example for the younger social workers to emulate.


Forgetting to be happy

WE LIVE in an era where information is power. People who have the ability to quickly assimilate data and knowledge are able to manipulate people and events to their own ends.

As a result, we are obsessed with the procurement and hoarding of information. Devices like the mobile phone, the PDA, and the PC are indispensable in helping us retain information. We delight in our efficient storage of daily reminders, phone numbers, addresses, progress reports, meeting minutes, discussion agendas, schedules, birth dates, anniversaries, appointments, and other data, but most people still find their lives empty.


Well, perhaps they have forgotten to store the most important reminder of all — to be happy.

Hmmm? Forgetting to be happy? “How is that possible?” some may ask. “One is happy when one is happy. Happiness doesn’t need reminding. I know I’m happy when … when I’m not unhappy!”

But happiness does not mean an absence of unhappiness.

Too many things in life can make us unhappy — missing the bus, getting our expensive leather shoes wet in the rain, falling ill during a vacation, losing our phone, paying too much for something, or our date stands us up.

There is no sense in putting off happiness until we have eliminated all the things that make us unhappy.

Happiness is a choice, an emotion we can consciously activate regardless of how miserable and frustrating the day may seem. Reminding yourself to be happy may not solve your problems, but it sure makes you feel a whole lot better! A heart full of joy will probably find life’s downs easier to bear and to rise from.

So remind yourself constantly to find joy in little things — smile often, be generous with your compliments, share jokes, help a colleague, pet an animal, treat someone to a meal, laugh heartily, and be thankful for your capacity to appreciate life and all its gifts. — From the Internet.