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The Strength and Spirit of Caregiving – By Chris Lim

The Strength and Spirit of Caregiving – By Chris Lim

Chris & his 10 year old son, Gabriel

This message was contributed by Chris Lim, IT & Comms Manager

Dear CaringSG members,

As a caregiver of two, I understand that caregiving can be exhausting, both physically and emotionally. On some days we feel like on top of the world, and on others the weight of the setbacks can feel like the heaviest of weights.

But here’s what I’ve realized: it’s on the stormiest days that we discover our true strength.

Let’s not forget that what we do is extraordinary. Every single day, we make a significant difference in someone else’s life. No act of love, no matter how small, ever goes unnoticed.

We are not just caregivers; we are life-changers, warriors, unsung heroes.

So right now I wish to say thank you. Thank you for your tenacity and your selfless love. Each one of you is a beacon of hope and a pillar of strength for the ones you care for, and for the entire community.

Let’s keep leaning on each other, learning, growing, and most importantly, CARING.

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CaringSG is now an IPC

CaringSG is now an IPC
(Institution of a Public Character)

Dear friends, CaringSG is now an IPC (Institution of a Public Character).

Any donation over $100 will stand to receive 250% tax deductions.

Your generous support will go a long way in funding our programmes (CAREconnect, CAREbuddy, CAREwell) to support Caregivers of Persons with Disabilities.

Donate today at

To be updated on CaringSG’s latest events and join your preferred caregiver support groups in our CaringSG Alliance Network (CAN), sign up as a CaringSG member and let us know your preference!

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Member Promotions Our Blog

CaringSG Member Perks with HIDOC, A Digital Health Platform

CaringSG Member Perks with HIDOC, A Digital Health Platform

Dear CaringSG Members,

CaringSG has partnered with HIDOC to offer easy access and support for caregivers’ healthcare needs.

HIDOC is a digital health platform that facilitates medical consultations between the public and healthcare providers.

CaringSG Member Perks with HIDOC

Virtual Consult and Home Care

  1. Virtual Consult with HIDOC’s GPs at $18 (+ medication as charged) [U.P. $20]
  2. Virtual Consult with HIDOC’s Specialists starting from $80 (+ medication as charged)
  3. Delivery Fee capped at $10
  4. Home Care
  5. $150 for doctor call (+ medication / procedure as charged) [U.P. $170 onwards]
  6. $50 for nurse call (+ medication / procedure as charged) [U.P. $70]

Complimentary for CaringSG members

  1. Assistance on doctor recommendation and pre care support
  2. Arrangement of home care appointment booking
  3. Follow up post care check in call
  4. Unlimited access to HIDOC’s content library
  5. All access to HIDOC’s services including healthcare experts
  6. Once a month hybrid workshop on mental health including coping techniques for you and your family members by HIDOC partner psychologists
  7. Onboarding of your existing doctors and allied healthcare onto HIDOC platform

How to claim your CaringSG member perks with HIDOC

Step 1: Take a screenshot of your CaringSG E-Membership card (see picture example below)

Access and click on “Login”.

Step 2: Download the HIDOC app on Google Play Store or App Store

Step 3: Follow the user guides below for video consultation, or home-based consultation based on your needs

1. Video Consultation User Guide

  • Tap on the “Partner Privileges” tile under the Select Consult segment and select CaringSG.
  • Click “Next” and select your preferred GP to schedule appointment date and time.
  • Take a screenshot of your CaringSG e-membership card and upload when prompted.
  • Enter the code HD-CARING-0001 under Promotions/Vouchers when checking out.

2. Home-based consultation user guide

  • Tap on the “Partner Privileges”tile under the Select Consult segment and select CaringSG.
  • Schedule appointment with our personnel via intercom by tapping the hand icon at top right hand corner.
  • Our personnel will guide you along to book appointment and purchase the service.
  • Enter the code HD-CARING-0002 under Promotions/Vouchers when checking out.

The high res user guides can be downloaded here.

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Member Promotions

Mount Alvernia Outreach Medical & Dental Clinic – 10% discount for all CaringSG caregiver members

Mount Alvernia Outreach Medical & Dental Clinic - 10% discount for all CaringSG caregiver members

All CaringSG caregiver members can now enjoy a 10% discount off medical and dental services at Mount Alvernia Outreach Medical & Dental Clinic (MAOC).

To enjoy this discount:

  • Please contact the respective Mount Alvernia Outreach Medical & Dental Clinic to make an appointment. Contact details are available at
  • To access your membership status on CaringSG, access and click on “Login”
  • Present your CaringSG caregiver membership profile to the staff who will verify your membership status

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Our Blog

Lunar New Year Greetings from our Board Member, Ms Vicki Heng

Lunar New Year Greetings from our Board Member, Ms Vicki Heng

Lunar New Year greetings! 

As much as I would like to say I hope you had a good break over the holidays, I know that caregivers do not always have that luxury. Prioritizing our loved ones over ourselves is natural, as their needs and degree of reliance far surpass ours. However, I was recently reminded how important it is for caregivers to indulge in a little self-care to sustain them on this journey, which can often be long and lonely. 

In the course of my work, I met a caregiver who looks after his wife, a stroke victim, on a full-time basis. With no source of income to pay for a helper, and with negligible family support, he could not leave her side, not even to seek medical assistance for himself when he accidentally suffered a deep cut and was bleeding profusely. When I brought up the notion that he had to first look after himself before he could care for her to the best of his ability, he tearfully uttered, clearly exhausted, and at the end of his tether: “How?”

How indeed, when your loved one is completely dependent on you for sustenance and attention? It is certainly not easy. Perhaps in this gentleman’s case, he could start with having short breaks in between feeds and baths or following some short exercise videos found online. A win-win solution that allows him some time for himself without leaving the home will need creativity, but that is a trait that caregivers handling tricky and unexpected situations already have. More importantly, I would say to all caregivers, talk to someone or find a support group of fellow caregivers – they already understand what you are going through. You may have a long road ahead but it does not have to be a lonely one. This is what CaringSG strives to achieve: For Caregivers, By Caregivers. 

I hope you find your win-win solution soon. And meanwhile, just in case you have not said it to yourself lately: you are doing a great job.

To be updated on CaringSG’s latest events and join your preferred caregiver support groups in our CaringSG Alliance Network (CAN), sign up as a CaringSG member and let us know your preference!

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Our Blog

Craft Fun for caregivers and families with CaringSG

Craft Fun for Caregivers and Families with CaringSG

“Do you want to be a Frog? Or a Panda? Or a Butterfly? Or a Tiger?”


The children were spoilt for choices as they pondered hard over what they want to be. While it may be a tough decision to choose an animal identity, it wasn’t that tough a decision for the children and families to sign up for the event – Craft Fun jointly organised by CaringSG, Art: Connect and Boon Lay Community Club 😊

As the name suggests, Craft Fun was indeed a fun filled event, bringing together 7 online participants and 5 families attending in person.

As a volunteer co-lead for this event, I was particularly impressed by the enthusiasm and passion of the Art: Connect volunteers. Despite their youth, their maturity and patience to guide the children step-by-step and the ability to engage both Zoom and in-person participants were just amazing! I secretly wondered whether I was that “zai” (Singlish term for “very good”) during my teenage years!

At the end of the event, looking at the smiles, and the budding friendship being built between the caregivers and volunteers as they exchanged tips in caring for their special need children, it warms my heart to see such strong community support.

As a caregiver of a 15-year old teen with autism myself, having a network of caregivers in the “same boat” and being able to talk to someone who can empathise with my situation are blessings I have always been grateful for. I sincerely hope many more caregivers and families will join us in the big CaringSG family as we walk the journey together.

Graphic of CaringSG staff and participant created by Ms Tan Pei Cheng, quote source: unknown

Big thanks to Art: Connect, Boon Lay Community Club CAREkakis and volunteers for your support and collaboration in our first inaugural CaringSG Boon Lay constituency event!

Contributed by Ms Tan Pei Cheng, CAREconnect Co-Lead

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Our Blog

2022: A New Year Ahead – Message from our Board Co-Chair, Dr David Ang

2022: A New Year Ahead – Message from our Board Co-Chair, Dr David Ang

Dear CaringSG members,

I wish every one of you a Happy New Year 2022! More than just a date change, the new year is about celebrating new hope with a fresh mindset, and aspirations for a new era to come.

As we look forward to the new year, let’s think and reflect on all the good and wonderful things we have experienced in the past, that gave us the reason to look forward to a new season and a new year.

CaringSG’s hope for our collective future is that we will have more inclusive communities for special needs families, with many more special needs caregivers who are well connected, enabled and empowered.

To be part of this change we wish to see, our CAREconnect team has planned a series of online and offline inclusive events (more to be updated), and we aim to train more caregivers to be CAREbuddies to provide other caregivers with peer support.

We’ve also launched our collaboration with Mount Alvernia Outreach Medical & Dental Clinic to provide subsidised or free services for caregivers and dependents, and if you require other forms of support, our CAREwell team is here as well.

CaringSG would not be possible without the synergistic efforts of caregivers, volunteers, partners, donors, and supporters working closely together towards our collective future. You will come to meet some of them in our monthly newsletter (interviews will also be posted on our blog).

We deeply thank each and every one of you for stepping up, and look forward to a fruitful 2022 with you.

To be updated on CaringSG’s latest events and join your preferred caregiver support groups in our CaringSG Alliance Network (CAN), sign up as a CaringSG member and let us know your preference!

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Walking With Wei Ping, A Special Mum

Walking With Wei Ping, A Special Mum

“I was sad for a while, but my personality is that I can ‘detach’ because sadness gets you nowhere; sadness is stagnant. I’m not saying you shouldn’t be sad. But you should also need to prioritise when to move on. When you’re resting, then you can grieve.”

– Wei Ping, mother of Yang, her 18-year-old son with autism



Walking through Wei Ping’s story as she shared over coffee, was like experiencing the dramatic highs and lows of a caregiver’s emotional journey.

When Yang was a baby, she realised he needed more attention to interact with her, and took 3 months of leave to spend time with him. She read about floor therapy and purchased a thin mattress to do 20 minutes of floor time with him a day, adding that eye contact only came at the end of 4 months. He also had seizures at 1 years old and was diagnosed with ASD at a very young age.

“He will sit in the corner for hours. He won’t go out of his comfort zone circumference to get a toy just out of his reach. He’ll flap hands and exhibit classic ASD behaviour.”

Wei Ping went to the internet to search for any information that could help him, including putting him on a GFCF diet to reduce his seizures.

“I went to the world wide web and read until my eyes popped out. I was desperate to know.

I mean, it’s just my personality. I will ask questions, what GFCF is about. Taking milk was a big issue for him so he had diarrhea and constipation all his life since he was born.”

Along the way, she picked up information about vestibular, tactile activities via occupational therapy, read about supplements, and borrowed books from parents who were able to afford and purchase books on autism and diets. She wanted to understand the principles of how to help autistic kids holistically, and how to apply what she learnt to support Yang’s daily routines.

“My son was so rigid that everything little thing will trigger him. When he had afternoon nap, he wouldn’t sleep until 3-4am. However, I was young then and had energy to sleep late. Hence, I would read a lot at night, and do mind mapping (of how to help Yang).”

Another challenge was Yang’s aggressive response to sensory challenges. Wei Ping used to get scratches where her skin was not covered when Yang had a meltdown. When Wei Ping and family moved back to Singapore from the US, the environment was generally noisier. Even the sound of birds chirping or crickets in the park could trigger panic in Yang.

“He’s very sensory. Cannot touch sand, cut fingernails, cut hair, shower. Neighbourhood hair stylists didn’t want to cut his hair. He also had his ears cut before. But now he’s better. He tolerates the process.”

He also didn’t eat very much until he was 12. Mealtime was a fight and he would only eat 2 mouthfuls of her homecooked food in school, refusing to eat anything else.

She enrolled Yang in occupational therapy (OT) but found it was expensive. To save costs, she tried to learn as much and do the OT with her son at home or at the playground such as the sandpit. To further support Yang, Wei Ping also found two therapists who came to her house thrice a week to do ABA, which she found helpful for her son’s development.

Although Yang attended Rainbow Centre and Wei Ping felt the teachers were good, she felt he was not suitable in a big school and decided to enrol him in a smaller private school after a few years. She also tried speech therapy, however she withdrew him as she felt he was not ready yet. Subsequently she restarted speech therapy when he was 13 years old.

“There’s a time for everything. Parents may feel that a particular therapy is no good because you did not meet a suitable therapist. Or maybe at that point of time, your child is not ready. Although Yang was not ready for speech therapy as a child, I could see he wanted to speak when he turned 13. He’s quite attentive now. His diction improved, and he can speak.”


Training Yang in life skills

In the past, Yang used to be so rigid that if he and Wei Ping walked to his grandma’s house and deviated slightly from the usual route (such as walking round the other side of the pillar), he would have a meltdown.

If he was sitting in the car driven by Wei Ping, he would insist that his mum park at the same parking lot every day, and she could not brake suddenly or it would trigger his anxiety. For example, once when Wei Ping had to suddenly break at a red light, Yang panicked and threw a toy at the windscreen (“Luckily it didn’t break!”).

Wei Ping worried that her son would continue to throw tantrums as a teenager, so from 4 years old she started his “training” of basic rules he needed to know, and life skills he needed to possess.

“You cannot control every single thing in your kid’s life. Just choose top 3 priority areas, pick your battles. For everything else, either redirect or look into it at a later date. The areas will change as your child grows.”

“When I was training flexibility in the route from my house to grandma’s house, I tried one new route, and when he’s 70% there (being able to accept the new route), I start on another new route. I also expanded his exposure to different ambient noises such as a baby crying, a bus going past.”

She would use off peak periods such as mid-afternoons to take Yang out just to train him to walk to the nearby shopping mall or go to the airport. She trained him to walk beside her without having to hold his hand, allowing him to go wherever he wanted, as long as he walked beside her.

She taught him how to take the MRT first, then subsequently the bus much later.

“Training tolerance of MRT: take one stop from Simei to Tampines and come back. Then slowly expand to going to Tampines Mall, walking one round and coming back. It could sometimes take years to train a route.”

She also trained him in being patient, such asking him to wait until she finished eating at the coffee shop before buying him a drink. While waiting, he would have a watch and a fidget cube to help him pass the time, and she would then deliver his promised reward.

By building trust with him, and fulfilling what she has promised him, she helped him work on expanding his tolerance and understanding.

Due to Wei Ping’s relentless efforts at exposing Yang to different activities, Yang has tried farm skills at a hydroponics farm, soccer, and also going on stand-up paddling excursions at sea.

At night, she would reflect on her day, recap what happened, and do an after-action review (such as what went well, what didn’t go so well, what she could have improved) on the incidences that happened during the day.

“I would think of what to do differently and develop Plan A and Plan B if the incidence happens again. I visualize what could happen and use trial and error. If both plan A and B don’t work, it’s back to the drawing block. The analysing is very important. Sometimes it’s not that the Plan A didn’t work, but it was the first time you tried it, and it needs more time as you cannot see immediate results.”

From her long journey, she knows how clueless and scared new caregivers are, even when surrounded by more awareness and information on special needs.

“Too much knowledge is overpowering. Parents don’t understand, or they feel overwhelmed, or they are very very busy.”

Because of what she went through, she decided to set up Shoulders, a support group for caregivers to share information relevant to other caregivers, so that they wouldn’t have to struggle to find the right information like how she struggled in the past, trying to read everything she could find and figuring out what works.

About Lim Wei Ping and Shoulders Support Group:

Lim Wei Ping is a special mum to her only son, Yang. She quit her job when he was a child to care for him full-time. In 2010, she set up Shoulders support group to share information and resources useful for special needs caregivers. She also founded YoungstarSG, a community initiative and social enterprise, to provide home-based work for teens and adults with autism, in 2018.

To be updated on CaringSG’s latest events and join your preferred caregiver support groups in our CaringSG Alliance Network (CAN), sign up as a CaringSG member and let us know your preference!

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Volunteer Feature: Dr Ngiam Xin Ying, CAREconnect Webinar Lead

Volunteer Feature: Dr Ngiam Xin Ying, CAREconnect Webinar Lead


Many members who have attended CaringSG’s online webinars would find Dr Ngiam Xin Ying a familiar face as she is one of our emcees.

We hear more from Xin Ying about her volunteer journey with us and what she and the CAREconnect webinar team has in store for members in 2022!

Q: Please share more about yourself 😊

XY: I graduated from NUS’ faculty of medicine in 2005 and trained in paediatrics at National University Hospital (NUH). Currently, I work in a small paediatric practice in Ang Mo Kio, practicing both general and developmental paediatrics.

I am also mom to 3 kids – my 10-year-old son and 3-year-old twin daughters. My son was diagnosed with ADHD in Primary 2. He is a really bright and artistic young man but has his challenges; nevertheless, we are slowly making progress!

In my free time, I enjoy reading and drawing comics. I am also a volunteer with Tzu Chi Singapore (not terribly active at the moment), where I helped with doing preschool observations for children suspected to have developmental difficulties and also provided artwork for some of their promotional material.

Q: What do you do as a volunteer with CaringSG?

XY: I am the webinar lead for CaringSG. My team and I organize the monthly webinars for caregivers every 3rd Saturday night of each month.

We come up with a variety of topics which we think will interest caregivers of special needs children and persons with disabilities. We will then try to contact suitable speakers – both professionals in the relevant fields, as well as caregivers who are willing to share their personal journeys as pertains to the topic at hand. This is to promote an equal partnership between professionals and caregivers.

Our webinars have been well-received, and we can see that the participants are very engaged. In particular, when caregivers share their stories, we see an outpouring of support and encouragement in the Zoom chat. We know from this that the stories have touched their hearts.

Q: Why did you step up to volunteer with CaringSG?

XY: I joined because Dr Lim Hong Huay called me and I couldn’t say no! Haha… But to be honest, I thought it was a really meaningful initiative to have caregivers support one another, and for professionals and caregivers to work as partners in bringing about positive changes for the special needs community.

Q: What do you enjoy about your volunteer work?

XY: Getting to know more people among the volunteer pool, professionals in the relevant fields and other caregivers who are doing amazing work. It is beneficial both to my professional work and personal growth. I also am happy to meet fellow healthcare professionals who are also caregivers – it makes me feel less alone!

Q: What can members look forward to?

XY: 2022 will be our second year running the monthly webinars. We have come up with a few series of talks about topics like future care planning and relationships. So, do join us as members (it’s free!) and look out for the webinar series at

To be updated on CaringSG’s latest events and join your preferred caregiver support groups in our CaringSG Alliance Network (CAN), sign up as a CaringSG member and let us know your preference!

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CaringSG Launch: Excerpts from Dr Lim Hong Huay’s Speech

CaringSG Launch: Excerpts from Dr Lim Hong Huay’s Speech

This is an abridged version of Dr Lim Hong Huay’s speech at CaringSG’s virtual launch on 20 Nov 2021.

Good Afternoon. Thank you for joining us at this official launch of CaringSG and Project 3i.

Your presence is great encouragement to the CaringSG team and all the caregivers. The same goes to all the partners and allies who are joining us on Facebook Live today, thank you for your unwavering support!

CaringSG is born in 2020 out of 3 things.

First, the fire of the COVID pandemic.

The circuit breaker last year cut many special needs families off from mainstream services. Many suffered in the isolation. Surprisingly, we saw caregiver groups and the community rallied together to reach out and help each other. When the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Many of the Caregiver groups in CaringSG’s founding community have been around for years. But the pandemic makes us realise one thing, that is, TOGETHER, we can do so much more.

Secondly, CaringSG is here because of the many helping hands in Singapore.

Many of us, including myself, will not be here today, if not for all the special needs services that supported our children and families all these years. Since CaringSG’s inception, we have also received much guidance and support from the Ministry of Social and Family Development, the SG Enable, the National Council of Social Service, our Angel donors, community partners and professional allies. We hope to work with you more closely in future for greater 3P partnership.

Last but not least, CaringSG comes from the hearts of caregivers. Through caregiving, many of us have gained a very strong and big heart. It’s estimated that there are 350,000 special needs caregivers in Singapore and we are a multi-talented community. Many of us can give back in many ways. Hence our logo of a multi-coloured heart with a tick. CaringSG wants to grow more strong and big-hearted caregivers, so that our talents can contribute to building a caring and inclusive Singapore.

So here we are today, CaringSG, by Caregivers, for Caregivers, and for the Community.

Caregivers are very busy people. If we do not have a good plan, we would not have come this far. Project 3i is this good plan we believe in and come this far for.

We want to specially thank our CaringSG’s founding donors, the Toteboard Enabling Lives Initiatives, the Temasek Foundation, the SG Enable, and the National Council of Social Service for jointly funding Project 3i. Thank you for believing in CaringSG and Project 3i.

In the next 2 years, CaringSG will pilot our 3i Caregiver support service model.

3i stands for integrative, individualised and intentional

  • Integrative for social-health integration through a bio-psycho-social and ecological approach
  • Individualised for services that meets the unique needs of caregivers, families and the community
  • Intentional for our focus in synergising with existing services for greater social impact.

The 3i model consists of 3 programs, and they are the CAREconnect, the CAREbuddy and the CAREwell programs. Together, the 3 programs form a continuum of support for caregivers across lifespan.

Notably, the CAREconnect program includes a unique grassroot training and collaboration, called the CAREkaki program. This will be implemented in Boon Lay and Kampong Glam in 2022, followed by another 2 constituencies in 2023.

The CAREbuddy program trains caregivers, whom we call as CAREbuddy, to support another caregiver through peer mentorship.

CAREwell will also collaborate with key community partners to bring more inclusive services to the special needs families. For example, we are collaborating with the Mount Alvernia Outreach Clinic to offer affordable inclusive medical and dental services for caregivers and their children. We will also be piloting Community Circles with the Institute of Policy Studies to improve community support for caregivers.

CaringSG has also borne other early fruits, including the formation of the CAREcottage, a community of home and small businesses started by caregivers for their children, such as Beads by Beads, Crunchy Teeth, Evol Studio, JojoMama, Mustard Tree and Young Star SG.

Assortment of CAREcottage products and sponsored gifts for CaringSG launch guests and special needs families in Boon Lay and Kampong Glam

Lastly, to celebrate our launch, we will bring care and fun to special needs families in Boon Lay and Kampong Glam in the coming weeks.

The CAREkaki will be distributing goodie bags to 60 special needs families, which has gifts from CaringSG’s caregiver sponsors, $30 vouchers from the Singapore Discovery Center, and surgical masks from the Mask Fellows. A special thank you to our sponsors, the Singapore Discovery Center and the Mask Fellows for your generosity, and our Fantastic CAREkakis for your labour of love.

This will certainly not be the last, but the beginning of all good things that will come with CaringSG and Project 3i for caregivers in Singapore.

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