What does a former marine insurance underwriter do to help care for the less privileged? This is the story of care companion Belinda.
Belinda is a sprightly retiree living with her sister deep in the heartlands of eastern Singapore. To occupy her time, Belinda helps out care organisations to provide care companionship for a range of underprivileged persons. These groups include Acts of Life, Silverspring and others introduced to Belinda by her niece. Belinda extends her caregiving and companionship from children to the elderly. Some of the wards under her care are children who have been committed to homes, and Belinda helps bring them for outings and other activities. Other times, Belinda provides elderly care, be it providing medical escort services, company and companionship, or helping to feed the immobile. Through her network of contacts and organisations, Belinda has been spreading her joy for life across various homes and institutions for past several years.
Belinda recalls her own late mother, who was one of her first careseekers - Belinda would bring her out in a wheelchair for shopping with the assistance of a domestic helper. "Even when she was sick, she refused to bother anyone. She's a lady who doesn't bother people much - fuss-free, an angel, who doesn't disturb people even when she is sick". Belinda also recalls an elderly lady who used to be quite the fixture around the neighbourhood areas, be it the void deck or the market. This lady disappeared suddenly, and the neighbours later pieced together that her children had sent her to a home. This created a void in the neighbourhood and Belinda often wonders if she is being treated well. Belinda strongly believes in the therapeutic and palliative value of art and craft - "we should have homes where whoever is capable, can handle art of craftwork. Something productive that can be used to benefit themselves and others."
Drawing from her professional experience, Belinda points out that there are systemic gaps that are currently being filled by people like her, and the provision of such step-down care services will soon feel a supply-side strain because there are just too few people willing to provide companionship and other similar types of care. "Insurance doesn't want to cover this sort of thing - it is too complex from an actuarial viewpoint". And thus she soldiers on to help others where the commercial refuses to provide. We wish Belinda all the best in her endeavors and caregiving – if you wish to engage Belinda, hit the button below!