More room for family, thanks to volunteers

More room for family, thanks to volunteers
Volunteers (above) cleared out the clutter in the room before giving it a fresh coat of paint and furnishing it with beds, a study table and chairs, to the delight of Muhammad Aqil Zafran and his sister Nur'arna Aqillah Zafra and their parents Muhammad Fadzil Abas and Amrah Ahmad.

SINGAPORE - With seven people crammed into two bedrooms in a four-room Housing Board flat, it is a tight squeeze for housewife Amrah Ahmad and her family at their Bukit Batok home.

To make matters worse, she and her mother suffer from diabetes and kidney failure and it's down to her husband Muhammad Fadzil Abas, 27, who works as an administrative officer, to do the household chores.

The family was given a helping hand last Friday night when 10 young volunteers helped to clear out a third room which was cluttered with junk and a mattress. Last Saturday morning, they came around again to finish the job, paint the walls and install beds, a study table and chairs.

They were among 60 volunteers from Pei Hwa Alumni Youth Wing, Grace Assembly of God and Hong Kah North Grassroots Organisations who revamped rooms for children at four needy households in the Hong Kah North constituency last week.

Ms Amrah, 30, who lives with her parents, husband, son, daughter and nephew, was delighted with the refurbished room. She said: "With seven of us in two bedrooms, it got a bit cramped. I am thankful because honestly I can't do this alone with my condition."

After the volunteers' nine hours of hard work, Ms Amrah's son Muhammad Aqil Zafran, five, and his sister Nur'arna Aqillah Zafra, four, tried out their new beds by bouncing and jumping on them.

Ms Chan Xiuming, vice-chairman of the Hong Kah North Community Club Youth Executive Committee which started the Room for Improvement project, said: "We first saw this idea on television, and we wanted to bring it to our own community.

"Through such projects, we can reach out to families who need help and foster a relationship with them. When they require help in future, we may be able to refer them to the right places."

This article was first published on MONTH DAY, 2014.
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