CoLOVEful: huART

 

On 6 July 2019, Saturday at the hardcourt outside Boon Lay Drive Block 176, there was a group of people in blue at around 1pm. No, they were not Smurfs or Avatars, but a group of volunteers waiting for the event CoLOVEful to start.

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CoLOVEful is a project series initiated by Blossom World Society’s exco committee which revolves around the theme: racial harmony. The name CoLOVEful is a combination of the words: ‘company’, ‘love’ and ‘full’, together it means ‘company full of love’. The pilot event CoLOVEful: huART; aims to create awareness of the importance of racial harmony and social cohesion, to bond people of different races together and to understand the differences in culture and practice.

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huART is a wordplay on ‘huat’ and art. ‘Huat’ being Singaporeans’ favourite word, which means to prosper, was combined with art to make the whole project sound more Singaporean and close to the heart. CoLOVEful: huART hoped to get the elderly who lives alone to befriend others who might be their neighbour but does not have the opportunity or chance to leave their homes or to meet new people. This pilot project was co-organised by ntuc SilverAce Senior Activity Centre (SAC) at Boon Lay Drive Block 179. With their help, the exco committee of CoLOVEful: huART put together a programme that will bond and engage the elderly to make new friendships, lasting memories and to participate in SAC’s future activities.

 

CoLOVEful: huART had ice-breaking games for the elderly to get to know one another, play nostalgic station games, decorate photo frames, take photos with a photo booth filled with local props as well as eating -- our nation’s favourite activity after queueing. All of these activities accompanied by enthusiastic volunteers.

The ice-breakers consisted of the Laughing Game, created by one of CoLOVEful’s planning team member and human BINGO. For the Laughing Game, the elderly were seated in a big circle, they would have to laugh out loud to the person on their right. They can make any kind of laughing sound or noise and pass it onto the next person. This activity was enjoyed by both the elderly and the volunteers as it got everyone laughing their bellies off! Human BINGO had the elderly to walk around (the circle made by the chair) to see what they could strike off after knowing a new fact about the others.

The ice-breakers consisted of the Laughing Game, created by one of CoLOVEful’s planning team member and human BINGO. For the Laughing Game, the elderly were seated in a big circle, they would have to laugh out loud to the person on their right. They can make any kind of laughing sound or noise and pass it onto the next person. This activity was enjoyed by both the elderly and the volunteers as it got everyone laughing their bellies off! Human BINGO had the elderly to walk around (the circle made by the chair) to see what they could strike off after knowing a new fact about the others.

The station games had nostalgic games like eraser flipping, bowling with water bottles as pins and pick up sticks. The elderly were put into groups to facilitate the station games so two groups can send one member to compete. Those that finished early could visit the photo booth to take photos with the props or with their accompanied volunteer befriender.

The station games had nostalgic games like eraser flipping, bowling with water bottles as pins and pick up sticks. The elderly were put into groups to facilitate the station games so two groups can send one member to compete. Those that finished early could visit the photo booth to take photos with the props or with their accompanied volunteer befriender.

Moving on, we got the elderly to sit around the tables to start decorating photo frames for them to take home. Team CoLOVEful had stickers that ranged from food to cartoons, washi tapes, stars and googly eyes. The elderly were assisted by the volunteers to decorate their photo frame.  Before the event ended, food was served and the elderly had local sweet and savoury delicacies after long hours of having fun. Sweet delicacies from both Chinese and Malay race were included, savoury delicacies included our local favourites like curry puff, egg tarts and carrot cake sticks.

Moving on, we got the elderly to sit around the tables to start decorating photo frames for them to take home. Team CoLOVEful had stickers that ranged from food to cartoons, washi tapes, stars and googly eyes. The elderly were assisted by the volunteers to decorate their photo frame.

Before the event ended, food was served and the elderly had local sweet and savoury delicacies after long hours of having fun. Sweet delicacies from both Chinese and Malay race were included, savoury delicacies included our local favourites like curry puff, egg tarts and carrot cake sticks.

Come 4pm, the event came to a closure with gifting the elderly the printed major group photo taken at the start of the event to commemorate their present at CoLOVEful. Saying our farewell to the elderly, some took more photos, some gave volunteers a warm hug or a firm handshake. The feedback from the volunteers and elderly were they wanted an event like this again! The volunteers enjoyed making new friends (both the elderly and volunteers), conversing with the elderly and of course the food. The elderly enjoyed getting out of their homes and their comfort zones, having someone to talk to and doing something they do not get to do regularly. All in all, event CoLOVEful was a great success with the giver and receiver happy and delighted. Who gave and who received is up to you to decide after reading this. See you at the next CoLOVEful event!

Project CoLOVEful