#Heartwork: Ms Dorin Phua

08 May 2024

As a member of the Frasers Property’s Group Strategic Communications and Branding team, Ms Dorin Phua’s role has evolved over her ten-year tenure, from initially supporting investor relations to her current focus on community investment and internal communications. Dorin's passion for community involvement was ignited when she participated in a volunteer event by Frasers Property.

“What truly resonates with me is the organisation’s interest in aligning our corporate purpose with employees’ purpose. Frasers Property has provided me with opportunities to explore, learn and grow. My interest in community work was ignited when I first volunteered at one of Frasers Property’s organised events a few years back. With that first step and fortunately, with my role in a team that oversees community investment, I’ve been able to meaningfully explore and take up more projects related to employee volunteering, and work with various non-profit and voluntary organisations to contribute more meaningfully to our communities, “ shared Dorin.

Frasers Property’s corporate volunteering programme is rooted in its Purpose – Inspiring experiences, creating places for good. The programme aims to foster positive interactions within communities while making a meaningful impact on people’s lives. By engaging employees in volunteering, Frasers Property not only contributes to worthy causes but also gains insights into the diverse tapestry of individuals within their organisation.

Motivation for Participating in Corporate Volunteering Initiative, Project V

At the Company for Good Singapore Summit last year, Frasers Property’s Group CEO Mr Panote Sirivadhanabhakdi participated in a panel discussion ‘Purpose Accelerates through the Ecosystem’. It was at this inaugural event that the corporate volunteering pilot initiative was seeded with Frasers Property.

Their Group CEO was deeply impressed by this idea, and Frasers Property eager to take part in this pilot initiative with other purpose-driven businesses. As he eloquently expressed during the Summit: “One of the challenges in embracing corporate purpose is to evoke change from within. Our people are important assets who can make this connection possible within the ecosystem.”

Encouraging Employee Participation

Project V
Dorin (second from the left) volunteers with colleagues for Project V.

Frasers Property’s partnership with Lions Befrienders for Project V is mainly in support of their IM-OK programme. Assigned volunteers visited seniors’ homes in pairs, befriending them, and teaching them how to use the IM-OK device. To ensure seniors become savvier with the device and monitor their health, volunteers were required to visit them four times over six weeks.

Frasers Property utilises internal communications channels and events like the ‘Learn Over Tea’ sessions to disseminate information and foster participation. In addition, they recognise employees’ busy schedules and keep volunteering events concise, often lasting for a couple of hours or half a day. To encourage more to commit, they introduced ‘volun-teaming,’ where teams of employees take turns to visit seniors, ensuring consistency and flexibility.

“Given the extended commitment required by Lions Befrienders, we devised a solution – volun-teaming – volunteering in teams. In this approach, a team of four employees took turns visiting seniors in pairs. The presence of a person from the previous session ensures familiarity and consistent progress tracking. Volun-teaming allows teams to adjust schedules based on work commitments and each volunteer now needs to visit the senior’s house only twice, instead of the original four visits. Example: On the first visit, Volunteers A and B participate; on the second visit, Volunteers B and C; on the third visit, Volunteers C and D; and finally, Volunteers D and A complete the final session,” shared Dorin.

Frasers Property volunteers at Red Cross Home
Dorin (first row, fourth from the right) with Frasers Property volunteers at a Lions Befrienders seniors’ homes painting session prior to Project V.

Initiatives include the Inclusion Champions programme with SG Enable, supporting seniors through the IM-OK programme with Lions Befrienders, and partnerships with organisations like the Singapore Red Cross.

“Real estate has an important role to play in harnessing the value of human connection, combating social isolation, breaking down social barriers between people and creating a lasting impact on people’s lives. As part of the social dimension of its Purpose, Frasers Property places an emphasis on inclusion and community connectedness. With its footprint and position as the largest prime suburban retail mall owner in Singapore, Frasers Property launched the Inclusion Champions Programme across 10 malls in Singapore. This innovative initiative aims to create more inclusive spaces and experiences for community members with diverse needs. 

Fully sponsored by Frasers Property in Singapore, representatives of the Inclusion Champions undergo six hours of inclusivity training annually. The programme covers consumer inclusiveness, led by SG Enable, as well as first responder training to support individuals with dementia and shoppers on the autism spectrum. The training, provided to frontline employees at Frasers Property’s malls and employees of its retail tenants, was conducted by Dementia Singapore and St Andrew’s Autism Centre respectively,” shared Dorin.

Benefits of Corporate Volunteerism

The programme fosters team synergy, cross-functional networking, and deeper connections among employees. It empowers seniors to manage their well-being independently while providing valuable experiences for volunteers. By putting their purpose into action, Frasers Property strengthens its workforce’s understanding and commitment to creating positive impact.

Frasers Property volunteers at a Lions Befrienders
Dorin (first row, second from the left) and Frasers Property volunteers at Red Cross Home for the Disabled.

Future Goals and Aspirations

Frasers Property’s Group Community Investment Framework guides its social impact and purpose driven initiatives. The framework channels its resources to three areas – Environment, Health & Wellbeing and Education – where it can make the greatest impact, while ensuring alignment with its focus on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. While its Community Investment pillars focus on corporate volunteering, giving and strategic partnerships.

Frasers Property aims to progressively boost employee volunteering rates and continue fostering a sense of community and purpose. They plan to enhance accessibility to volunteering events with their employees and continue its collaboration with organisations like SG Enable, The Food Bank Singapore, Lions Befrienders and Singapore Red Cross to expand their impact and reach.

By prioritising corporate volunteering, Frasers Property demonstrates its dedication to creating meaningful experiences and making a positive difference in the communities it serves. Through employees like Dorin, the company endeavours to inspire change and leave a lasting legacy of goodwill.

Are you looking to make an impact through volunteering? Check out our Volunteer Resource Hub for useful links to help you in your volunteering journey.