Staff Stories, May 2020
Mr. Mohd Syafie
Assistant Manager, Governance & Special Projects
Q: You started with us as a Counsellor/Youth Worker at YouthReach in 2014, share with us what made you join us and your role at that time.
During my childhood, I had to report to a Before-and-After School Care service at a community Voluntary Welfare Organization for six years. It was not an easy experience to abide and follow the routine activities and programmes as I had behavioural issues. Upon completion of the programme, I realised that there were many takeaways and it wasn’t a bad experience after all. The life skills taught helped me cope with challenges and the volunteer mentors provided psychological and social support in my life. I could have gone astray if it weren’t for such services.
10 years into my first career, I decided to give back to the community after attaining my part-time Degree in Counselling. Boys’ Town’s history and mission caught my attention and I started to research about its services. After my interview in July 2014 with Dr Roland Yeow who is the current Executive Director, I was employed as a Counsellor/Youth Worker to support the youth in the community through interest-based programmes. I am definitely grateful for this opportunity and it is now my sixth year serving in Boys’ Town.
Q: How has your journey been working in Boys’ Town from a Senior Youth Worker, YouthReach to an Assistant Manager, Governance & Special Projects?
Since the youth landscape is dynamic and ever-evolving, it was a steep learning curve. Intrinsic motivation kept me going. Building rapport with the youths is key towards developing a good working relationship. Through experience, trust with the youths develops when they sense genuineness and sincerity which makes the relationship reciprocal. Similarly, as I took on more leadership roles, it became apparent to me the importance of being genuine and accept who we are.
Q: What has been the most rewarding for you during your course of work?
The youths view us as role models and it is heartening to watch them grow and excel in life. I have received greetings from the youths and volunteers on my birthday and they have even personally thanked me when they’ve achieved certain milestones in their lives.
I am also thankful for the opportunity to be appointed as the in-charge for one of the organization’s fundraising events in 2019 as well as to oversee and manage the Ministry of Social and Family Development’s Youth-At-Risk Engagement programme from 2016 to 2019 during my stint in YouthReach.
I have witnessed new talents joining Boys’ Town and it is encouraging to see them progress in their career and take on more leadership roles. I am happy for their joy and successes, and this is definitely rewarding for me as I always share with the youths “Your success is also my success.” The most rewarding thing is to always be happy to see people grow and do well in life, regardless of who they are. This is in line with the quote by Boys’ Town’s Founding Saint St Louis de Montfort “Those whom the world rejects must move you the most.”