Media release: The first Singapore Youth Impact Collective 
to empower disadvantaged youths

(From left) James Tan, Tan-Wu Mei Ling, Justina Tan, Joyce Teo, Dr Ang Kiam Wee, Pang Sze Khai and Jacky Ang 

  • This is the first initiative in Singapore that uses the collective impact model, which enables funders and non-profits to own and address complex social issues in a coordinated manner.
  • The Collective aims to increase the ability of disadvantaged youths to progress to working life through training and skills development.

Singapore, 9 October 2018 – The Singapore Youth Impact Collective (the “Collective”) launched two youth empowerment programmes and opened a new A.P.T.I.T.U.D.E. Centre at ITE College Central today, to help disadvantaged youths transition more successfully from the classroom to working life.

The Collective was formed when its members attended a Colabs series on Children & Youth in 2017, and realised that multiple stakeholders are needed to work together to find effective ways to help disadvantaged youths across various life stages.

They recognise that while education can help bridge social gaps, the environment and other socio-economic factors can affect some youths’ socio-emotional development, academic performance, aspirations and employability. This may hinder them in reaching their full potential and transitioning into independent working adults

The Collective comprises six members, namely Changi Foundation, the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS), Credit Suisse, Octava Foundation, SHINE Children & Youth Services (SHINE) and TOUCH Community Services (TOUCH). To date, the funders have pledged close to $1 million towards the programmes.

“The Singapore Youth Impact Collective is the first such collaboration in Singapore to use the collective impact model,” highlighted Joyce Teo, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, CFS. “This approach acknowledges the value of collaboration in the face of complex social issues that requires the coordinated efforts of multiple entities, usually from different sectors.

“CFS is glad to contribute as a backbone organisation by providing dedicated staff and resources to support this initiative and its participating partners to act in concert along mutual goals.”

Members of the Collective were drawn together through a common vision for change and formed an action plan that coordinates mutually agreed-upon activities which allow members to leverage on each other’s expertise and resources to achieve a set of shared outcomes.

The Collective aims to understand and establish the elements within its programmes that are effective in improving work-readiness for disadvantaged youths. It hopes that non-profits working with youths can then use this knowledge to achieve better outcomes in the future.

They also want to advocate for organisations across different sectors to adopt a collaborative ownership of social issues and be an example or model on how financial and non-financial resources can be provided to complement and build non-profits’ capabilities.

The Collective’s programmes are curated for youths aged 17 to 25 who may require support in school or after graduation as they seek employment. Their aim is to empower 230 youths to be work-ready over the next three years.

“It is a strategic decision for Changi Foundation to join the Collective,” said Ivy Choo, Head, Changi Foundation. “Apart from deepening our learning in the giving space, more importantly, it allows us to better address current needs in the community. By aligning our efforts with that of the other members in the Collective, we can create greater impact for the youths and their future.”

Jacky Ang, Singapore COO and Branch Manager of Credit Suisse AG, Singapore Branch,shared that Credit Suisse is a strong advocate for the collective impact model, having seen success in HK and Malaysia. “The Collective enables companies like Credit Suisse to play an active role as a corporate citizen beyond funding. Every member brings something different to the Collective, be it expertise, networks or in-kind contribution, thus increasing efficiency and avoiding duplication of efforts.”

“Apart from providing funding, Octava Foundation has discovered other ways to contribute towards work-readiness for disadvantaged youth. We realise that there are opportunities to connect the non-profits to businesses that we work with—some of these companies may be potential industry partners for SHINE and TOUCH,” noted Debbie Fang, Head, Octava Foundation.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for TOUCH to work together with like-minded partners to enhance youth development work and develop better training programmes,” shared Anita Low-Lim, Senior Director (Children and Youth Group), TOUCH. “We value the culture of open communication and trust because it allows everyone at the table to learn from each other and explore better ways of working.”

“Through the Collective, SHINE hopes to extend its work to address needs that we were not previously able to on our own,” affirmed Benjamin Teo, Centre Director for Yishun Centre, SHINE. “The collective impact model brings us all to the table equitably, and allows non-profits to tackle operational challenges alongside funders. I believe this will help us work towards a more lasting impact for our youths and their families.”

With the launch of the programmes, TOUCH and SHINE welcome moreindustry partners andcompanies who are willing to provide opportunities for internships and job immersion experiences for the youths.

Interested parties who would like to help with training and work opportunities are invited to contact for more information on how they can support this programme.


The Collective’s goal is to improve work-readiness for disadvantaged young persons by:
–      encouraging their attainment of educational or vocational qualifications;
–      developing their socio-emotional skills and personal assets; and
–      changing their aspirations and providing them access to employment opportunities.

TOUCH and SHINE’s programmes include these elements in their programme design, and are targeted at youth at different stages of transition to work. TOUCH works with students in school, while SHINE will work with youth who may have finished their national service or graduated from school, who can benefit from additional support in gaining employment.

A.P.T.I.T.U.D.E @ ITE College Central
TOUCH’s A.P.T.I.T.U.D.E is based in ITE College Central. The programme complements the vocational training that ITE students are learning in school. It develops students’ interests into practical market skills through close mentorship from industry experts and TOUCH youth coaches.

Through this framework, the students are able to form a secure attachment with mentors and be guided in the right direction in terms of developing their passions into practical market skills. A.P.T.I.T.U.D.E involves seven Interest Groups in areas such as Barista, Adventure Facilitation, Adventure Sports, Outdoor Events Management, Wedding Planning, Culinary Arts and Photography.

SHINE’s YOUTH FORTE programme targets youths 17 to 21 years’ old who are not in school or training, or sustainable employment of longer than six months, and are facing transition issues to workforce.

YOUTH FORTE takes the youths through various stages including evaluation, individual coaching, socio-emotional training, employability skills training, internships or project-based experience, and vocational training leading to WSQ certification. Throughout the process, youths receive individual life coaching.

Youths are deemed to have completed the programme when, armed with better socio-emotional competencies and the confidence to deal with work challenges, they stay in employment for at least six months.


Changi Foundation
Changi Foundation was launched in April 2012 to support and reach out to disadvantaged youths, a social cause that Changi Airport Group (CAG) has supported since 2010. Each year, CAG allocates a percentage of its net profit to the Changi Foundation, which supports youth community efforts. Through the programmes and projects funded by the Changi Foundation, CAG aims to touch the lives of 600 youths each year.

Community Foundation of Singapore
The Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS) is a non-profit organisation founded in 2008 to encourage and enable philanthropy in Singapore. CFS matches donors’ interests with causes and offer ways for them to make a greater impact through their charitable funds. CFS also collaborates with charity partners to identify programmes that support diverse communities. Its purpose is to enable real and meaningful change while inspiring a philanthropic culture in Singapore. CFS is a registered charity with Institution of a Public Character status.

Credit Suisse
Credit Suisse AG is one of the world’s leading financial services providers. At Credit Suisse, we believe that education is one of the keys to inclusive economic growth. Credit Suisse’s Global Education Initiative and our regional education activities support a variety of programs improving access to education and quality educational opportunities. At Credit Suisse Asia Pacific, our philanthropy work supports selected organisations that provide disadvantaged children and youth with access to quality education and employability skills that pave their entry to the workforce. We also support programs that build the entrepreneurial mindset in young people across all societal groups.

Octava Foundation
Founded in 2016, Octava Foundation seeks to provide access to education and opportunities for children and youth from economically disadvantaged families to enable them to have sustainable livelihoods, achieve their aspirations and achieve self-efficacy.

SHINE Children & Youth Services
SHINE believes in the right of every child and youth to shine. Towards this end, it reaches out to children, youth and their families through school-based, centre-based and community-based social work and educational psychology programmes so as to enable children and youth to maximise their potential.

TOUCH Community Services
TOUCH Community Services is a not-for-profit charitable organisation, dedicated to meeting the needs of children from low-income or single parent families, youths-at-risk, needy families, people with special and healthcare needs, and frail elderly. Through its network of 18 services, TOUCH is committed to serving people of all ages, races, religions and backgrounds. Each year, its programmes and services meet the needs of more than 31,000 clients.

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