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When Love Starts at Home: Different Moments, Different Hats
In our Mother’s Day Special, Staff Sergeant Rehka D/O K Govindasamy shares how she juggles her many commitments and her secret to engaging with young children.

She’s a Community Policing Unit (CPU) officer with the Singapore Police Force (SPF), a part-time university student and doting mother to two daughters, Akshaya, 8, and Akshana, 4. “Different moments, different hats,” as she’d say. 

Asked how she juggles these responsibilities, Staff Sergeant (SSgt) Rehka D/O K Govindasamy explains that it’s all due to her passion for service, efficient time management and a supportive husband.

11 May 2018 SSgt Rehka SPF Mothers Day
Bringing empathy and humour to her many roles: SSgt Rekha with her daughters Akshaya and Akshana (left). PHOTO: Desmond Ang


Tell us about your work as a CPU officer, and what you love about it. 
I’m with the Youth Team and our work involves conducting Police talks at kindergartens and schools, as well as youth engagement efforts within Jurong Police Division. Whenever I conduct a kindergarten talk, the innocence of the children really touches me, and makes me want to serve them even more. 

It’s important for us to reach out to youths too. That’s why we started the National Police Cadet Corps Challenge Shield event for our cadets last year. We also work closely with school counsellors, and reach out to children with special needs as well. 

You’re studying part-time with the Singapore University of Social Sciences. How has your family helped you with juggling work and your studies? 
Good time management is crucial. I’m in my final semester now and on days when I have to go to class, my husband makes sure that he’s home to help our older daughter, Akshaya, with her schoolwork. Once I get home, we’ll spend time together as a family. I love to watch cooking shows with Akshaya. 

How does being a mum help you in your work? 
A few months ago, a primary school counsellor referred me to a case involving a single mother and her daughter. The mother was my age and a former drug abuser who’d turned over a new leaf. Lately, her daughter had been leaving home without permission. 

So I sat down to speak with the daughter and explain why she shouldn’t have acted as she did. When our talk ended, she made me a promise that she wouldn’t leave home anymore. 

The mother was grateful for my sharing. She held my hand and said, “Thank you so much for doing this for me.” Thankfully, we haven’t heard of any incidents with the daughter since. 

CPU officers are very much a part of the larger community. What’s your secret to working with children? 
Eye contact! It’s really important to have this, and you should always smile. This helps us to build trust with children. When I’m working with kids who are very young, I’ll kneel down to speak to them so they don’t have to look up at me. 

As for youths, we have to engage with them in different ways, and try to see things from their perspective. Sometimes I’ll list the pros and cons of their actions, for example, so that we can discuss them. It helps to have a sense of humour too!

  1. by Desmond Ang
  2. 11 May 2018
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