IMPACT 0575: DIGITAL SKILLS FOR UNDERPRIVILEGED YOUTH
The YCLP is a community leadership programme designed for volunteer leaders-in-training aged 17-25 years old (also known as an Aspirant) to conceptualise and implement a project to address real needs on the ground with a National Agency and/or Community Partner.
Nicholas Ang, a marketing employee at GrabFood and GrabMart, has been actively involved in community work, joining Student Council and volunteer programmes since young. Knowing that he will soon reach the age limit for the Youth Corps Leaders’ Programme (YCLP), the 28-year-old decided to take a leap of faith to enter.
Through YCLP, he started Project DG with fellow aspirants and embarked on a journey to teach youth from rental blocks at Kebun Baru about digital skills and safe usage of the web. The team engaged the youth through interactive games and workshops like a handphone photography workshop. Today he shares more about his journey with YCLP!
What motivated you to get involved with volunteerism?
What got me into volunteering in general was seeing needs in the community, engaging with like-minded youth of all ages, and getting to be a part of a bigger organization.
Can you share with us your experience with Youth Corps Singapore?
It has been an enriching one, although I almost did not qualify, given that the cut-off was 25 years old! I never regretted the experience. It has helped me in my professional work to understand different points of view and extend empathy to everyone around us. I’m more confident and proud to say that I’m a fellow Youth Corps Leader!
Who inspired you to contribute and give back to society?
The past and present batches of Youth Corps leaders when I read about them via newsletters and video interviews.
What are some challenges you faced when volunteering or implementing your community projects?
Managing team dynamics as well as my schedule as I have work and other commitments on the side. COVID-19 did not make things any easier for the team and we have had to pivot to online methods to fulfill our project objectives, though coincidentally, our project was about teaching youths how to use the Internet!
Could you share more on how your contributions have made a positive impact?
We engaged with youth staying in rental flats, teaching them about the dangers of the web, such as phishing. It has been a great volunteering experience knowing that we value-added to what the government is pushing for across all age groups. It’s never too late for Internet literacy!
Please share with us other volunteering initiatives that you are involved with currently.
I currently volunteer in my church as a life group leader to fellow young adults. I also help with the planning of young adult gatherings and workshops.
Were there any key takeaways or learning points from your volunteering journey?
It’s never too late to try, and if you never try you’ll never know. There may be patches of “dry seasons” in the volunteering journey, but with the support of your teammates, that’s what makes the journey exciting and something to look back on.