Our Story
A Heart For The Seniors
Edwin Soh Heng Yang
Social Worker, Goodlife!, a Senior Activity Centre under Montfort Care
Published on 27/05/19
Meet Edwin Soh, a social worker whose intrinsic belief that everyone should live with dignity led him to join the social service. This is his story.   

What sparked your interest in social service?
I knew I wanted to join the social service when I was in the second year of university. It is a blessing to me that the values of social work are aligned with my intrinsic belief that everyone should live with dignity. It is a wonderful privilege to have my passion and career come together.

How has the social service scholarship enabled you to fulfil this dream?
The social service scholarship provided me many opportunities to gain industry knowledge and grow professionally. Networking sessions and industry talks are also routinely organised to expose scholars to social service.

Now that you have joined the social service sector, what are your current
roles and responsibilities?

I am a community social worker at Goodlife!, a Senior Activity Centre under Montfort Care. At Goodlife!, we take a holistic approach to active ageing by organising activities that address physical and mental wellness of our seniors.We help them to make informed decisions on the next trajectory of their future. My daily work involves case management and community work, which includes organising community outreach and talks for seniors and clients in the community. I also conduct home visits with trained senior volunteers and give assistance to the seniors in the vicinity.

What is the biggest challenge you face in your work then, and
how do you overcome them?

We sometimes find ourselves working with an elderly who might be too embarrassed to ask for help or not receptive to the healthcare services we provide. We establish rapport first so that they may be more willing to accept our help. As a social worker, we may worry that our assessment is flawed and that our work with clients may cause them more harmthan good. At times like these, it helps to have faith in myself, my training, and the support of my supervisor and my team.

On the other hand, what is one memorable experience from
your career?

It was the first case that was assigned to me. My client was an elderly man who had suffered from strokes, had difficulty expressing himself and showed signs of social isolation. He broke down frequently during our initial sessions. After inviting him to participate in the activities at the Senior Activity Centre, his interaction with other seniors helped him regain his confidence. He became more bubbly, talkative and even playful during these activities. I learned that it was connecting with others that makes people’s lives more positive at an elderly age. That is the beauty of community work with seniors.

What advice would you give to those who are considering the
social service scholarship?

First, you need to ask yourself: what are your personal values and motivations in seeking this scholarship? A scholarship is a privilege and with it, comes the obligation to
serve a cause bigger than yourself. Volunteer in a cause that is close to your heart. Seek counsel from existing professionals, as they can present a realistic appraisal of the challenges and the rewards of this journey. 

We are professionals who are proudly empowering Singapore’s people to lead dignified lives. Discover what it means to be part of the Tribe and career opportunities within the social service.

A role in social work is one of many in social service. To find out more, read about a career in social work.
Edwin engaging with a client in a session.