Miss Universe Singapore finalists give out food to needy
Miss Universe S'pore finalists and charity Keeping Hope Alive give out food and mattresses to the needy
The finalists of the Miss Universe Singapore (MUS) 2016 pageant are proving that they are beautiful both inside and out.
The girls spent about two hours on Sunday morning (Oct 9) visiting Blocks 51 and 52 in Chin Swee Road, which have one-room flats that are mostly occupied by the elderly.
Taking the lead from local charity Keeping Hope Alive (KHA), they gave out food to residents and also asked them if they needed any chores done.
The finalists were joined by about 40 volunteers from KHA, including children, with the youngest just three years old.
Even though the day started early, at 7.30am, the finalists were excited about being able to help.
Vanessa Tay, 19, was particularly happy about giving food to the residents.
"I want to spread some love and help them. I'm excited to give back to the community... It's something really close to my heart," she said.
The theatre student in the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts said this was not her first time doing volunteer work, and that, being more fortunate, it was her duty to do what she could for others.
Fellow finalist Joeypink Lai, a real estate agent, went door to door, giving out bowls of porridge.
The 24-year-old had been hoping to help out by cleaning the residents' homes as well, but was "disappointed" that she wasn't able to do more. She later said she hopes to return to help the residents in the future.
She said: "I was very impressed by the kids (who were volunteering)... I should be more like them, more active...
"It starts from young, so next time, when I have my own children, I'm going to bring them (along to volunteer)."
Though many of the residents did not understand English, finalist S. Sreeveena, 24, a design coordinator, was unfazed.
"I'm just here to make life better (for the residents)... It's not about the language," she said.
Sreeveena was not the only one out of her comfort zone.
Self-employed jewellery designer Patricia Eng, 27, said she had never done volunteer work like this before. An animal lover, she usually puts in time at animal shelters.
She said: "The residents can be difficult because they're (used to being) isolated... You need to help them open up... It's about being genuine (about wanting to help them)."
Eng said it was heartbreaking to see families crammed in the small one-room flats and it made her realise how fortunate she is.
The residents were happy to see the finalists and thanked them for delivering items such as porridge, bananas and mattresses.
The girls' enthusiasm was also not lost on the veteran volunteers from KHA.
Mrs Chua Gek San, 41, a financial consultant, said: "I was impressed that they were so interested... They even asked if they could get more porridge for the residents (after they had run out of food to give out)."
Another volunteer, building facilities engineer William Chan, 55, said: "They were very enthusiastic... They wanted to find out more about KHA.They also gave ideas on how to support (the less fortunate)."
SOFT POWER: (From left) Nikki Tay, Nutan Rai, Vanessa Tay, Tanisha Khan and Hazel Tay saying hi to a resident.
FOOD: (Above) Vanessa Tay offering porridge to a resident with Hazel Tay. (Below) S. Sreeveena offering porridge to another resident with Shona Woo.
RIGHT TO YOUR DOOR: Patricia Eng carrying a mattress by herself.
RIGHT TO YOUR DOOR: Joeypink Lai (front) and Nikki Tay (back) bringing in a new mattress for a resident.
FOR THE CAMERA: Joeypink Lai (left) and Nikki Tay (right) having their picture taken with a fellow volunteer.
About Miss Universe Singapore
The 15 finalists of Miss Universe Singapore 2016 will be vying for the coveted crown at the grand final on Sunday.
Co-organised by The New Paper and Miss Universe Singapore Organisation, this year's pageant is presented by the Singapore Turf Club.
It is supported by official imaging partner Canon Singapore, official car partner BMW, official wellness partner Beaute Hub, official venue partner The Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, official resort partner Bintan Lagoon Resort, official make-up partner Cosmoprof Academy and other sponsors such as BodyBurn Fitness, Indiba Asia, Orchard Scotts Dental and Amber Lounge.