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Future Guardians (Part 1)

A heart for keeping Singapore safe and secure – meet three of our 2021 Home Team Sponsorship Awards recipients!
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GRAPHIC: Home Team News

The Home Team Diploma Sponsorship is awarded to Polytechnic students who demonstrate leadership qualities, drive and resilience, and who share the vision of the Ministry of Home Affairs to keep Singapore safe and secure. Three of this year’s Award recipients share their aspirations with us!

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PHOTO: Samantha Fuentes

Home Team Diploma Study Award Recipient, Immigration & Checkpoints Authority (ICA)

What inspired you to pursue a career in the Home Team?
When I was young, I was a big fan of the Crimewatch series! Seeing the officers in action, carrying out investigations and tracking down suspects – it dawned on me that keeping Singapore safe was what I’d find joy in. 

Three of my cousins also happen to be Home Team officers as well, serving with ICA and the Singapore Police Force. Listening to their stories made me more committed to apply for the Diploma Sponsorship, so that I could get a head-start in my career. 

What does being a member of the Home Team mean to you? 
It means that I’ll be able to contribute to Singapore’s safety and security. I chose to join ICA because I believe that securing Singapore’s borders is as important as the work of other Home Team officers. We are the first line of defence in keeping Singapore safe.  

How did you feel when you learnt that you’d received the Home Team Diploma Study Award?
I feel privileged to receive this as it has been something I wanted and worked for since I was young. As for my parents, they were really thankful and supportive of me. Their advice to me is that, having been given this opportunity, I must take it seriously and do my very best. – Interviewed by Samantha Fuentes

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PHOTO: Rytasha Passion Raj

KAARTHIKA D/O KUMANAN, Singapore Polytechnic
Home Team Diploma Study Award recipient, Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB)

When did you first develop an interest in the work of the Home Team?
When I was in Jurong West Secondary School, I joined the National Police Cadet Corps (NPCC) as my co-curricular activity as I wanted to give back to the community. To earn our Community Service badge, we’d go door to door in the neighbourhood to raise awareness about crimes like bicycle theft and so on. I felt proud to be able to play a small part in keeping the community safe, and it made me want to do more. That’s why I applied to join the Home Team. 

Tell us about your volunteer experiences. 
As part of Singapore Polytechnic’s BP Mentoring and Tutoring Scheme, I went to an assigned student care centre once a week to tutor children and conduct educational workshops for them. Often, I had to be more of a “big sister” to the children; someone they can trust.

We also organised monthly game sessions to teach the children about teamwork and other positive values. Through this mentorship experience, I learnt to be more resilient, mature and understanding, as I had to be a good role model for the children. 
Why did you apply for the Home Team Diploma Study Award?
I wanted to embark on a rewarding career that’s in line with my passion for serving the community. When I was in NPCC, I underwent an Anti-Drug and Inhalant Abuse Badge programme with the Singapore Anti-Narcotics Association. I learnt how drug abuse can have detrimental effects on an abuser's physical, mental and emotional health. This is why I feel strongly about preventive drug education, and that it's important to educate youths about the consequences of drug abuse. This experience sparked my interest in the anti-drug cause, and I applied for the Study Award as I wanted to do my part to keep Singapore drug-free. 

How did your family feel when you told them that you’d received the Home Team Diploma Study Award?
My mother has been with me throughout ever since I applied for this Award. She is very proud of me because she’d wanted to join the Home Team herself when she was younger! – Interviewed by Rytasha Passion Raj

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PHOTO: Rytasha Passion Raj

SEAN LEE, Singapore Polytechnic
Home Team Diploma Merit Award, Singapore Police Force (SPF)

How did you first become interested in the Home Team? 
In 2015, I was introduced to the Citizens on Patrol (COP) scheme by a grassroots leader in my neighbourhood. My mother and I, along with several of our neighbours, decided to join COP to help watch over the community. I joined other residents in conducting bicycle patrols of the neighbourhood and sharing crime prevention measures with those we met. 

Was there an experience you had as a COP volunteer that made you appreciate the work of the Home Team? 
On one occasion, I saw the side of a lorry brush against an elderly resident who was at a traffic junction. This resulted in injuries to her forehead and arm. As I’d served in the National Civil Defence Cadet Corps in secondary school, I knew first aid. I quickly took a clean piece of cloth, poured some water on it and applied it to the elderly resident’s cuts before calling for further assistance. This incident taught me the importance of being observant in order to respond quickly to such situations. It also led me to apply for a first aid certificate, to expand my knowledge of lifesaving skills. 

What are you looking forward to as a Home Team officer?
Knowing my interest in this domain, my mother, Polytechnic lecturers and friends encouraged me to join the Home Team. I want to develop further as an individual and learn how to work effectively with others to keep Singapore safe. With experience, I also hope to become more compassionate, a better listener and a more active individual. – Interviewed by Rytasha Passion Raj

Read Future Guardians (Part 2)

Home Team Sponsorship Awards 2021
The Home Team Diploma Sponsorship is awarded to Polytechnic students who demonstrate leadership qualities, drive and resilience, and who share the vision of the Ministry of Home Affairs to keep Singapore safe and secure. 

Upon graduation, Home Team Diploma Sponsorship Award recipients will embark on a career with one of the Home Team Departments: the Singapore Police Force, the Singapore Civil Defence Force, the Immigration & Checkpoints Authority, the Singapore Prison Service or the Central Narcotics Bureau. This year, 39 Polytechnic students received Diploma Sponsorship Awards. Congratulations to our 2021 Award recipients!

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PHOTO: Home Team News

Read the speech by Mr Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim, Minister of State, Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of National Development, delivered at the 2021 Home Team Sponsorship Award Ceremony in April 2021.

Written by

Rytasha Passion Raj and Samantha Fuentes


10 May 2021

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