A Tribute to Silent Heroes

18 September 2020  •  2 mins read


2020 must be the year of silent heroes.
COVID-19 has turned the world and our lives upside down. Millions are infected around the world and hundreds of thousands have lost their lives. It also revealed the weakest links in our political, economic, social and healthcare systems, with the vulnerable being most affected in our communities. It is threatening our livelihoods, displacing workers, and disrupting our way of life and work.

It is one of our greatest challenges in recent history, and it calls for leadership, courage and resilience in every circle. 

Globally and in Singapore, we have professionals in health care, sanitation, public transport, F&B, logistics and other key industries that kept the world going despite lockdowns in one form or another. We are grateful for their selfless sacrifice and sense of duty.
We always have had silent heroes amongst us – caregivers in every setting, community volunteers and leaders who uplift and care for those who need more support. They are the ones who help to make the world a better place, without public recognition, acclaim or praise. Of course, there are different types of silent heroes, with contributions big and small, over time or a single act of kindness. Personally, I had the opportunity to work with 53 of them this year, as Team Solidarity for the Solidarity Gift for the SG Livelihoods Fund campaign.

Three of them are my co-founders and 50 of them are the campaign’s community champions who reached out to their networks and community to encourage the gifting of their Solidarity Payment or a donation of any amount, to those who need it more. It was an uphill journey but the collective efforts of the team demonstrated that it is possible for ordinary, passionate Singaporeans from all walks of life to take on the mantle of personal leadership to make a significant contribution to uplift those who are struggling amongst us.

Together, we are so thankful to over 1,000 donors who are friends, family members and contacts of the community champions, to be able to raise more than $320,000 which goes toward providing tangible assistance to more than 320 displaced breadwinners and vulnerable families through our charity partners – the Association of Muslim Professionals, Methodist Welfare Services and TOUCH Community Services. But this was only one of the hundreds of ground-up campaigns that came together to help different segments of our community.

These included extending food assistance to vulnerable families, providing essentials and support to migrant workers, ensuring digital access and connectivity, providing mental health support and addressing domestic violence. There was also an outpouring of generous donations from both corporate and private donors, including the donation of the Job Support Scheme by many corporates. Beyond the campaigns, there are many other silent heroes.

They are part of the contact tracing and the testing team, the safe-distancing volunteers, the neighbour who looks out for an elderly who lives next door, the colleague who took on more work so that another colleague can tend to the needs of his or her family amidst home-based learning during the circuit breaker months, and many others who extended a helping hand and served in one way or another.

While there are many who responded to the COVID-19 crisis, there are also those who remain steadfast in their commitments to the communities they serve as existing unmet social needs are exacerbated. As silent heroes, they don’t seek external recognition or acknowledgements. But the public recognition of silent heroes is for us, the larger community, to be inspired by their heart of service and selfless contributions.

Do you know a silent hero? Nominate them now so that we can thank them as a community, and raise up more silent heroes in our midst to provide the socio-emotional safety net to see Singapore through this challenge of our generation.

Written by Cheryl Chen,
Co-Founder, Team Solidarity & Solidarity Gift for SG Livelihoods Fund

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Singapore Silent Heroes

The Silent Heroes Award Presentation is an annual ceremony organised by CAS – Civilians Association (Singapore). The aim of the award is to recognise ordinary, everyday Singaporeans and permanent residents for their extraordinary humanity and compassion towards people, causes, and missions.


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Recognising humanity with an award that expresses gratitude of our society for their kindness towards fellow individuals, families, community and environment. Through this award, we look forward to inspiring more to become Silent Heroes. Someday soon, everyone shall be a Silent Hero, not only in Singapore but globally.