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Be A Guardian: Having a Heart for Those in Need

When it comes to helping others, Sergeant Gwen Ong of the SCDF is always ready to step forward.
Be A Guardian spotlights exciting career, scholarship and sponsorship opportunities in the Home Team. 

When she was on duty at the Ang Mio Kio Fire Station, Sergeant (SGT) Gwen Ong of the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) would wear the standard blue Paramedic uniform. But these days, you’ll find her in a Nurse’s uniform, doing her rounds at Tan Tock Seng Hospital. As the recipient of a Home Team Diploma Sponsorship, she’s eager to sharpen her lifesaving and nursing skills. “I learn something new here every day,” she explains. We caught up with SGT Gwen before she began her afternoon shift at the Hospital.

PHOTO: Peggy Tan

Why did you choose to join the Home Team?
I had the chance to intern with the SCDF when I was studying Paramedic and Emergency Care in 2015, and I liked the structured work environment. I also came to learn about the Home Team Sponsorship from my brother, who’s an officer with the Central Narcotics Bureau

Share one detail about your responsibilities as an SCDF Paramedic that people might not know.
As part of our training, we’re attached to the delivery suites of hospitals to learn from experienced doctors and midwives. So all Paramedics are trained to deliver babies and assist with natural deliveries.

How did you feel about receiving the Home Team Diploma Scholarship?
I was extremely thankful as it gave me the opportunity to further my studies in the medical field. Pursuing Nursing at Nanyang Polytechnic allows me to strengthen my medical knowledge and understanding of patient care. These will help me when I resume my Paramedic appointment with the SCDF. 

How have your studies been so far? 

I’m in my final year of studies and will graduate in May 2019. Right now, I’m interning at Tan Tock Seng Hospital as my Nursing course involves alternate school and clinical hours. 

My duties at the Hospital involve caring for orthopaedic patients, with the guidance of experienced doctors and mentors. During my shift, I provide bedside nursing care, deliver medication and plan the care for my patients during their stay. What I found most interesting during my Nursing studies was being posted to Operating Theatre where I assisted in a range of surgical procedures, like caesarean deliveries.
From administering emergency care as an SCDF Paramedic to learning the finer points of Nursing and patient care. PHOTOS: Peggy Tan

Nursing can be challenging; in a hospital, we witness both joy and sorrow. Patients come in with different conditions and we have to assess them very carefully. We also treat critical cases and must constantly be “on the ball”. But I think it’s these experiences that lend meaning to my work.

What’s one quality that’s shared by both Paramedics and Nurses?
Compassion. This is as crucial as possessing technical skills. Having a heart to help others is the most important thing that we must have.

What advice do you have for those considering a career in the Home Team?

As Home Team officers, we find purpose in serving others. There are many challenging and meaningful appointments in the Home Team, so give it a shot if you have a passion for those in need. 

Be A Guardian
Turning the spotlight on exciting career, scholarship and sponsorship opportunities in the Home Team: 
Be A Guardian: Serving with Heart (SPF)
Be A Guardian: A Calling to Serve (SPS) 
Be A Guardian: In the Heart of the Action (SCDF)
Be A Guardian: An Eye for Investigations (CNB)
Be A Guardian: One Job, Many Facets (CNB)
Be A Guardian: Making an Impact Where It Counts (SPF)
Be A Guardian: Pushing Herself to Her Limit (SPF)
Be A Guardian: Having a Heart for Those in Need (SCDF)
Be A Guardian: Guiding Inmates onto the Right Path (SPS)
Be A Guardian: Ever Vigilant (ICA)
Be A Guardian: Turning Helplessness to Hope (SPF)
Be A Guardian: Engineering a Fresh Start (MHA)
Be A Guardian: One with the Community (SPF)
Be A Guardian: Empowering Inmates on Their Rehabilitation Journey (SPS)

A Career in the Home Team
If you’re keen to learn more about becoming a Home Team Guardian, visit the MHA website.

Written by

Peggy Tan


11 October 2018

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