NCSS channels more than $100m into transforming social service sector and attracting talent over 3 years

23 Feb 2024

New Transformation Sustainability Scheme launched at the first ever Social Service Tribe Festival that celebrates sector professionals with a shared purpose of transforming lives

SINGAPORE, 23 FEBRUARY 2024 – The National Council of Social Service (NCSS) has launched a new Transformation Sustainability Scheme (TSS) that will support social service agencies (SSA) to strengthen their organisation capabilities to attract and retain talent in the sector. More than $100 million from the Community Capability Trust is allocated to strengthen the organisational capabilities of the sector over the next three years, in key areas of people practices, volunteer management, and innovation & digitalisation. 

  1. Announced at the inaugural Social Service Tribe Festival by Guest of Honour, Mr Masagos, Zulkifli, Minister for Social and Family Development, and Second Minister for Health, the TSS offers support for SSAs to develop organisational capabilities holistically through funding of up to $200,000 over three years. Through the TSS, NCSS looks to strengthen SSAs organisational capabilities to better support social service professionals and deliver better service outcomes.

  2. Samaritans of Singapore is one of the SSAs which is looking at strengthening its organisational health through TSS. Gasper Tan, Chief Executive Officer, SOS shared, “This year, SOS celebrates 55 years of providing confidential emotional support to individuals facing a crisis, thinking about or affected by suicide. The funding is timely as SOS will embark on the journey of organisation transformation. The Transformation Sustainability Scheme will enable SOS to invest into strengthening staff and volunteer competencies, while also ensuring capacity and capability build-up to address the growing complexity of mental health needs in Singapore. The funding will also continue to equip the next generation of leaders in SOS to advance its 24/7 services in crisis care, to meet the evolving needs of distressed individuals at risk of suicide.”

  3. NCSS is developing a new Social Service Leadership Competency Framework to guide SSAs on the core leadership competencies that will drive organisational effectiveness in the sector. Talent attraction and the development of social service professionals have been part of on-going efforts in nurturing social service leaders. Ms Tan Li San, Chief Executive Officer, NCSS, said: "Building strong leaders within social service agencies is paramount to driving positive impact for service users. Effective leadership not only enhances the overall effectiveness of social service agencies, but also directly contributes to improving the well-being of the individuals and communities they serve."

  4. NCSS and MSF instituted regular review of the sector salary guidelines since 2015 to ensure salary of various social service roles in the sector remains competitive. SSAs are strongly encouraged to adopt the salary guidelines.

  5. The sector has been growing steadily from more than 15,000 professions in 2019 to more than 20,000 social service professionals in 2022.

    1. The sector is also attracting mid-career switchers keen to transition to social service. Since 2016, close to 200 new entrants have enrolled in the Career Conversion Programme for Social Workers (CCPSW) offered by Workforce Singapore, NCSS, and Singapore University of Social Sciences. The CCPSW is a two-year work-study programme that supports mid-career individuals in acquiring knowledge and valuable experience through supervised practicum sessions to become qualified and effective social workers.

    2. NCSS offers undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships and study awards to students pursuing studies in social work and other social-service related disciplines. Since 2016, more than 380 scholarships and study awards have been offered. 

  6. The two-day festival also showcased more than 30 purposeful and diverse job roles in social service. About 100 social service professionals have volunteered their time at the festival to share more information on the careers available as well as on the work of their SSAs serving individuals and families in need.

  7. Ms Cheryl Chia, a 28-year-old Occupational Therapist with AWWA, has given “play time” a new meaning for children with developmental needs. Joining the SSA in 2021 as a fresh graduate, she started an inclusive play project to create adaptive toys that build social-emotional skills, improve learning abilities and motor skills, aligning with her clients' unique needs. With the support of her work mentor, Cheryl and her team created a collection of 20 adaptive toys in one year. She shares, "It has been incredibly fulfilling to see how joyful and engaged our clients are, knowing that each toy is a vital tool supporting their holistic development."

  8. As a gesture of appreciation to all social service professionals there will be discounts at various retailers and partners like Mandai Wildlife Group, Auntie Anne’s and SingTel.

  9. Please refer to the annex for the variety of job roles in the social service.

Additional information can be found in the Annexes:

  • Factsheet on Transformation Sustainability Scheme
  • Annex B – Job Roles in Social Service Sector
  • Annex C – Special deals for Social Service Professionals
  • Annex D – Translation Glossary

For media enquiries, please contact:

Ms Melissa Anne Manuel
Senior Manager, Communications & Marketing
Tel: 9620 0672
Ms Joyce Poon
Senior Manager, Communications & Marketing
Tel: 9686 8358


About National Council of Social Service (NCSS)
NCSS is the umbrella body for over 500-member social service agencies in Singapore. Its mission is to provide leadership and direction in enhancing the capabilities and capacity of our members, advocating for social service needs and strengthening strategic partnerships, for an effective social service ecosystem. Community Chest is the philanthropy and engagement arm of NCSS and Social Service Institute (SSI) is the sector capability and transformation arm of NCSS. For more information, please visit

Annex A – Factsheet on Transformation Sustainability Scheme

To support social service agencies in strengthening their capabilities more holistically, MSF and NCSS have introduced the Transformation Sustainability Scheme (TSS) under Community Capability Trust (CCT).

All NCSS members and MSF-funded social service agencies can apply for up to $200,000 or 80% of total project costs (whichever is lower) over three years for targeted interventions in key capability areas such as People Practice, Volunteer Management, and Innovation & Digitalisation.

SSAs will be guided by the Organisational Health Framework for Social Service (OHFSS) assessment as the primary tool among other diagnostics, which diagnoses their organisational health and enables SSAs to more effectively identify areas for development.

Organisational Health Framework for Social Service (OHFSS) assessment

Annex B – Job Roles in Social Service Sector 

 Careers in SST

Annex C – Special deals for Social Service Professionals

S/N Supporting Partner Exclusive Deal
1 Auntie Anne’s
  • 1 free pretzel with every 2 pretzels purchased (Only at PLQ) 
  • 10% off ala carte items (Across all outlets islandwide)
2 Eat Pizza Singapore
  • Pepperoni Pizza + Bancha + Canned Drink for $9.90 (U.P. $11.80) 
3 Eyedentity
  • 20% off frames and lenses packages
4 Finger Waltz Music
  • Sign up for a free piano trial and receive a 10% discount on the first term fees for new students
  • Sign up for two terms of violin lessons with a 10% discount and receive a free new violin
5 J Glasses & Hearing
  • 20% off regular items (excluding contact lens & accessories)
  • Sign up our membership for free & receive $20 voucher without min purchase
  • Buy 5 boxes of contact lens & get 1 box free (participating brands only)
6 LAC Nutrition For Life
  • 25% OFF 1 LAC Supplement. Offer is applicable to regular-priced, LAC supplements only
  • Free 2-Year LAC Club Membership (U.P. $15) with any purchase
  •  10% off
 8 Mandai Wildlife Group
  • 25% off admission tickets to Singapore Zoo, River Wonders & Night Safari, plus get a complimentary $5 F&B voucher!
 9 Paris Baguette
  • Any Handcrafted Beverage at $5
 10 Pixie Nail Spa
  • 15% off ala carte services
11  Rrooll 
  • 10% off ala carte items (Across all outlets islandwide)
 12 Shihlin Taiwan Street Snacks
  • 10% off
 13 Singtel Exclusive Retailer
  • $50 OFF all Mobile Phone plans, all handsets/lifestyle/tablets. Promotion is stackable on existing handset discount promos. Offer is not transferrable
  • Enjoy 50% OFF 12 months Family Packs! Plus, get FREE 6 months Chinese Movies+ and $50 handset voucher from us!
 14 Super Sub    
  • 10% off menu items (including combos)
 15 The Seafood Market Place by Song Fish
  •  5% off regular priced items
 16 Zing 
  •  Free scoop of ice cream dessert for dining at Zing. Not valid for takeaways


Annex D – Translation Glossary





National Council of Social Service 国家福利理事会 Majlis Kebangsaan Perkhidmatan Sosial தேசியச் சமூகச் சேவை மன்றம்
Social Service Institute 社会服务学院 Institut Perkhidmatan Sosial  சமூகச் சேவைப் பயிற்சிக் கழகம்
Community Capability Trust 社会服务提升信托 Dana Amanah Keupayaan Masyarakat சமூக ஆற்றல் அறக்கட்டளை  நிதி
Transformation Sustainability Scheme 可持续发展转型计划 Skim Kemampanan Transformasi உருமாற்ற நிலைத்தன்மை திட்டம்
Social Service Tribe Festival 社会服务团体节 Pesta Komuniti Perkhidmatan Sosial சமூகச் சேவைக் கூட்டணி அணி விழா
Social Service agency 社会服务组织 Agensi perkhidmatan sosial சமூகச் சேவை அமைப்பு