SG Youth who provided help to a Village in Punjab

20 Singaporean youths from different races participated in a journey of service in aid of underprivileged children in Punjab, India, for three weeks in December 2017, as part of Young Sikh Association's (YSA) community service team, Project Khwaish XVII, at the Government School in Rattoke village, Sangrur District. 

In recognition of their invaluable and selfless service to the community in Punjab, Mr Amrin Amin, Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Home Affairs, presented certificates of participation to the 17 participants at the Singapore Khalsa Association Ballroom, Level 5, on 16 March 2018.
Mr Amrin Amin addressing all attendees during the ceremony. Photo credits to YSA.
Throughout the duration of this project, the participants developed a full-fledged library in the school and stocked it with 3000 books. Participants also refurbished and painted the school, in addition to overseeing the necessary electrical, plumbing and infrastructure repairs during the project.
Khwaish XVII Team painting the school facade. Photo credits to YSA.
A brand new library with murals, books, furniture and other teaching aids for the teachers to use. Photo credits to YSA.

Beyond rendering their service to the school, the participants distributed clothes and rations to the needy in the local community, and also spent time interacting with them. Concurrently, participants had time for some cultural immersion when they visited places such as the Golden Temple and the Wagah border.
Group photograph with all students and the Khwaish XVII Team. Photo credits to YSA.

This expedition showed the drive, determination and dedication of these young Singaporeans who ventured out of their comfort zones and spent three weeks in a developing village. They had basic living conditions, ate simple meals alongside the villagers, and travelled in less-than-comfortable transportation. They displayed qualities which are essential for doing well and succeeding in life, regardless of the hurdles which may head their way. Some of these qualities include leadership as well as professional skills.

Furthermore, this expedition was also an excellent opportunity to promote a selfless voluntary spirit, as well as service learning, among young Singaporeans, while encouraging them to develop an international outlook as global citizens. 

The diverse make-up of the project team added to its strength in diversity, due to comprising participants from various racial and religious groups, including the Sikh, Chinese, and other Indian ethnic groups.
The participants involved in Project Khwaish XVII. Photo credits to YSA.

The project was supported by the Youth Expedition Project at the National Youth Council, the Lee Foundation, TriStar Electronics, Thakral Group, Labour Tel Management Corporation Pte Ltd, as well as individual donors and well-wishers. Air India was the official airline for the project. 

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