No sightseeing on project trips

SINGAPORE - As a member of the Board of Governors of the Singapore International Foundation, I have accompanied several groups of volunteers on SIF projects in Thailand, Cambodia and Sri Lanka.

In none of these project trips have I seen volunteers taking time off for sightseeing.

The volunteers - be they from our polytechnics going on "Water for Life" projects, or medical specialists undertaking "Train the Trainers" programmes in Sri Lanka - were totally focused on what they had come for.

To suggest otherwise (" 'Voluntours' growing in popularity in Singapore"; March 10) is to demean the contributions and sacrifices of these volunteers.

It also does a disservice to the SIF's efforts in promoting global consciousness and building bridges of friendship among nations and peoples, through well-planned voluntary services programmes.

K. Kesavapany, Governor, Singapore International, Foundation

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