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A mission of hope and comfort for Singapore's homeless

Church outreach program tackles the wealthy city-state's hidden problem

A mission of hope and comfort for Singapore's homeless

According to a 2019 study, Singapore has about 1,000 homeless people, most of them elderly Chinese males. (Photo supplied)

No matter whether it is the cold winter, hot summer or wet monsoon season, a group of volunteers venture out on the streets of Singapore every Friday evening and look for homeless people sleeping rough in the city-state.

The volunteers from Catholic Welfare Services (CWS) provide the poor souls with snacks — a soft drink and a bun — and then walk or sit with them for a conversation to learn about their painful life stories.

Days before Christmas, volunteers met with dozens of homeless in various places in Singapore to offer a bag with gifts that contained among other things a T-shirt, masks, biscuits and daily essentials.

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“The volunteers don’t judge them or seek to solve their problems, but with a compassionate and open heart they listen to their stories of suffering and joy,” said Victoria Lim, one of the volunteers.

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