PPIS Newsletter January ’21

2020 was truly an unimaginable year, but amidst all the challenges that it brought, 2020 also gave us plenty of reasons to be grateful.


During the pandemic, OnePPIS joined hands to create, innovatepivot and most importantly, remain resilientOur staff went out of their way to keep things going when most of the world came to a grinding halt. Their efforts ensured women and families had access to a safe space. 


I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of an organisation which is unwavering in her mission to inspire women and strengthen families. 


I am also grateful to be among women leaders whose compassion led to new initiatives for women during these tough times, such as the WIN Fund which offers women one more avenue to seek help so no one is left behind. PPIS will continue to work with our partners so we can support women to achieve their aspirations.


The 25th PPIS Board brings together experts from various fields and is a harmonious balance of the young and the experienced. We will keep the Conversations on Women’s development going because all that we do, we do for you.


It’s full steam ahead for PPIS in 2021, as we look forward to achieving one more first – a halfway house for women so they can reconnect with their family, friends, and the community. 


Walso look forward to celebrating Vista Sakinah’s 10th anniversary, and upgrading our Family Service Centre (West) and Student Care Centre Jurong to serve you better.


In 2021, ware hopeful that things are looking up.  As you get on the road to recovery, remember that OnePPIS is always here with you, across the different phases of your life. 


On behalf of the 25th PPIS Board, may you have a healthier and happier 2021. 


– Mdm Hazlina Abdul Halim, President


Watch the President’s New Year Message:



2020 – what a year it was! For some, it was best remembered as unprecedented. For others, it was a year of unparalleled change. For us at PPIS, it was a year when teamwork took a different meaning as we moved towards OnePPIS.


At the organisational level, we saw changes in how our work was structured. Split team. Staggered hours. And work from home when Circuit Breaker kicked in. For some it was massive transformation when home became office. Creativity abound when ironing board became standing work table and at many homes dining tables took on multi-functional use. Our co-workers include young pre-schoolers, children on home-based learning, elderly parents and even pets. 


Such transformation was unheard of in the past when we struggled with allowing work from home. But with digitalisation, we conquered that struggle and were able to work from home, albeit some adjustments. 


How did we achieve an unprecedented 2020? TEAMWORK! At every level of the organisation from senior to middle-management and the important staff on the ground, there were teamwork at play. From PPIS Response Team ensuring that we keep staff safe to staff at working level looking out for each other. We may be apart but we are one heart. That is the spirit of OnePPIS.


As we look forward to the vaccine, we know that the new norm in 2021 will not be what it was pre-COVID-19 daysWe need to have mindset change. We are on that journey. 


If we broke new grounds in 2020 with inhouse video production of our social workers sharing on psycho-social resilience and our recent 49th Annual General Meeting, we are poised to venture into more virtual events. 


But in doing so, we shall not lose track on the heartbeat of the organisation – Serving with Compassion. We hope when situations allow for physical events, we could go back to serving with our hearts and engage our members and beneficiaries in person.


Wishing everyone a blessed 2021. 


– Mdm Tuminah Sapawi, CEO

PPIS held our 49th Annual General Meeting (AGM) to welcome the 25th Board of Governance. This hybrid AGM, which was organised in line with current safe distancing measures, saw Mdm Rahayu Mohamad stepping down upon completing her third, consecutive term. She will continue to serve as our Immediate Past President.


Taking over the leadership is Mdm Hazlina Abdul Halim, who was formerly Vice President since 2016. Former Honorary Secretary Ms Suree Rohan, has been appointed the new Vice President.


The new line-up of Board Members comprises a diverse group of professionals whose expertise will continue to advance our mission of inspiring women and strengthening families. As such, we are pleased to announce the appointment of our 25th Board of Governance:


Title  Name of Member  Status  
President  Hazlina Abdul Halim  Re-Elected  
Vice President  Suree Rohan  Re-Elected  
Honorary Secretary  Nor Ainah Mohamed Ali  Re-Elected  
Honorary Treasurer  Fawziah Jainullabudeen  Re-Elected  
Assistant Honorary Secretary  Nur Khairah Abdul Rahim  New  
Assistant Honorary Treasurer  Noraini Rizman Ali  New  
Immediate Past President Rahayu Mohamad  Re-Elected  
Board Member  Jummaida Rusdon  Re-Elected  
Board Member  Khuzaima Raja Kamarul-Den  Re-Elected  
Board Member  Salina Samion  Re-Elected  
Board Member  Sapiah Molla  Re-Elected  
Board Member  Dr Razwana Begum Abdul Rahim  New  
Board Member  Hawa Zinat Jailani  New  
Board Member  Maria Mahat  New  


In all, five new Board Members were elected while nine Board Members were re-elected to form the new Board of Governance – who will serve for the next two years – December 2020 to September 2022.


Among the newly-elected Members, Ms Nur Khairah Abdul Rahim, Entrepreneur and Marketer has been appointed as the Assistant Honorary Secretary, while Ms Noraini Rizman Ali, Director of Finance and Corporate Services at Julia Gabriel Education Group, will assume the position of Assistant Honorary Treasurer. 


The three other newly-elected Members are Dr Razwana Begum Abdul Rahim, Criminologist and Senior Lecturer at the Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS), Lawyer Ms Hawa Zinat Jailani and Ms Maria Mahat, Publisher and Co-Founder of Ungu Pen. The new line-up of Board Members comprises a diverse group of professionals whose expertise will continue to advance PPIS’ mission of inspiring women and strengthening families.


With this renewed leadership, PPIS will continue to serve the community with utmost dedication, under the guidance of our new Board of Directors. Let us work together to build a stronger OnePPIS. 

On 27 August, PPIS Research and Engagement Department (RED), as a member of the Singapore Alliance for Women in Ageing (SAWA), held a closed-door dialogue with six Women MPs to present SAWA’s findings on the survey – ‘COVID-19’s impact on female caregivers of older persons’


The qualitative survey involved forty-two caregivers whose care recipients were unable to perform at least an Activity of Daily Living (ADL) during the circuit-breaker. For SAWA, the survey findings raised pertinent questions such as whether essential care should be redefined during a pandemic to include eldercare services. In an ageing population with increasing cognitive impairment amongst the elderly, allowing eldercare services to continue operating during a pandemic may be necessary. This should be weighed against the fact that mortality rate amongst the elderly tends to be the highest during a disease outbreak.  


Hence, SAWA leveraged on the dialogue to advocate for advisories and measures related to elderly care to be made flexible to adapt to changing contexts to ensure caregivers are also fully supported and allowed some respite in times of crisis. SAWA also recommended that financial care packages and assistance schemes be extended to caregivers of older persons to ensure that theirs and their care recipients’ needs are fully met during critical times. 


To find out more about RED’s events and engagements, follow their social media pages on Facebook and Instagram, @ppisred! 

In commemoration of World Mental Health Day on 10 October, PPIS had teamed up with Safinah Institute in support of Muslim Women’s mental health and wellbeing. The organisation launched its first virtual tabung in line with this global campaign to raise awareness among the Malay-Muslim community and improve access to such services for women-in-need.


This year’s Mental Health Day had come at a time when Covid-19 has disrupted lifestyles and livelihoods. The past few months have brought numerous challenges, and PPIS believes the need for mental health and psycho-social support will continue to increase over the coming months. 


As part of the fundraising campaign, PPIS, in collaboration with Safinah organised various activities through PPIS and Safinah’s social media platforms. These included Instagram Live sessions with Ustaz Mizi Wahid and guests, as well as sharing of success stories to celebrate the strength and resilience of fellow Muslim women. In doing so, PPIS hope to also spur others to take active steps towards improving their own mental wellness.


Additionally, SYM AcademyPPIS’ resident expert in family therapy since 2015, also offers its series of Relationship Learning Circle (RLC), which invites women to come together to improve their mental health and well-being through positive interactions. Each RLC session is group-based, and focuses on a specific theme based on relationships or building relationships.


At its core, the campaign strives to educate and connect our community to useful resources to help identify and tackle potential mental health challenges. As family members or friends, they will then be equipped with tips and knowledge to offer the peer support necessary to uplift persons in recovery.


To find out more information about RLC and other programmes by SYM Academy, visit their Facebook page or reach out to hello@sym.academy.com

SYM Academy launched its first Systemic Interdependence Education Webinar series in October 2020. The Systemic Interdependence Education Webinar series offers a platform for interdependence learning, where professionals across different faculties, such as education, religion, sciences, health, and management, can interact and begin discoursing ways of encouraging efforts to address change mutually.


The inaugural two-part webinar titled: “Faith, Family and Workspace Post-Covid-19” was held on 14 and 17 October 2020. 74 participants of whom are practitioners and educators in their respective fields. This includes international attendees from Germany, United Kingdom, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia, Italy, Canada and Ireland.


Three international speakers were fielded in this webinar and they are Dr Basma Abdelgafar (Canada) Dr Gail Simon (UK) and Dr Birgitte Pedersen (Denmark). The speakers, together with the Therapy team from SYM Academy, engaged participants on the importance of developing interdependence thinking and working across contexts such family, work and religion contexts, in facilitating collective responses to changes in a post-Covid-19 world.


Representatives from organisations such as Mendaki, Darul Ghufran Mosque, MUIS, Singapore Prison Service, National University of Singapore and distinguished guests such as Dr Yaacob Ibrahim, Dr Shamsuri Juhari from the Institute of Policy Studies and Dr Halimah Krausen from Germany were also part of this important online conversation.


If you are interested to collaborate or begin interdependence conversations in your contexts, please be in touch with SYM Academy at training@sym.academy. 

In celebration of Grandparents’ Day, PPIS Student Care Centres (SCCs) and SportCares jointly organised the PPIS-SportCares Grandparents’ Day on 28 November. PPIS first organised this event last year with the aim of promoting active ageing and fostering intergenerational bonding. This year, we adjusted to the new norm and organised the event with a slight twist.


Due to the current safe distance measures, we could only have six sets of grandparents-children participating physically at PPIS Family Service Centre (East) (FSCE). The remaining 100 children and grandparents joined in the fun virtually via Zoom. Our hybrid event was also graced by Member of Parliament for Marine Parade GRC and Mayor of South East District, Mr Fahmi Aliman.


Event highlights included virtual workout sessions by students from PPIS SCCs and representatives from SportCares, as well as their grandparents who gamely joined them in the spirit of active ageing. We also held a cookie-decorating activity, which saw our children sharing the fruits of their labour – their beautifully-decorated cookies, with their grandparents, both at the comforts of their homes and at FSCE.


We also welcomed special guests for our sharing sessions that underscored the importance of healthy living and active ageing. One such guest was Mr Syed Abdul Kadir, who is the first and only boxer to have represented Singapore at the Olympic Games. Other guests who joined via Zoom were Mr Brian Richmond and Ms Rahimah Rahim, who introduced participants to the VintageRadio.SG app – a free phone app which streams classic pop tunes from the 1950s to 1970s.


Through this event, we hope to empower our seniors to stay active and mobilise communities to help seniors in their journey towards healthy living. Furthermore, by moving the celebration online, PPIS and SportCares hope to spur more grandparents to embrace technology as another means of connecting with their grandchildren.

Some 60 children from our two Student Care Centres at Bedok and Jurong went through a full-day writing workshop organised by Writing Through, an organisation set up in 2014.

Held over Zoom, no one would have guessed that the two facilitators, Kristin Schuster and Bee, were both in Cambodia when they conducted the session. Said Kristin, “This was a first in many ways. It was the first full length workshop that we’ve done for PPIS and it was done completely via Zoom. Bee and I were in Cambodia while we were broadcast into the classroom interacting with these brilliant students.”


“The students impressed us with their creativity, imagination and passion. We were fortunate to be able to work with them and watch the wheels turn.”


The students discussed the idea of change, exploring topics such as personal growth, marriage, the pandemic, global warming, and even a butterfly emerging from its pupa.


Both supervisors, Madam Zaleha and Madam Kalthom, were impressed with how the students came out of their comfort zone to express their thoughts through creative writing.


PPIS and our two Student Care Centres would also like to thank the US Embassy for sponsoring the workshop!


On 24 November, PPIS RED organised its third session of #REDGirlsForGood for 40 girls residing at PERTAPIS Centre for Women & Girls (PCWG). You might have seen previous sessions of #RedGirlsForGood on RED’s social media pages! 


For this session, the girls listened to a motivational sharing by Nura J, former actress and Founder of Pearlista, on setting goals and feminine hygiene.  She also gifted the girls a set of Pearlista’s day pads. The girls then did some self-reflection, where they listed down their long-term goals and what they deemed as their beautiful traits.    


In addition, the girls got creative with Nasyitah Tan, Founder of LOOMS and created their own pouches using recycled felt materials. As for refreshments, All Things Delicious had kindly sponsored a high tea box for each of the girls which they really enjoyed!


Look out for our social media posts on RED’s Facebook and Instagram soon! Don’t forget to like/follow and help us spread the good word!

As a lead-up to the White Paper to address women’s issues, PPIS RED organised its inaugural Online Conversation on Women Development to gather insights and recommendations from the Muslim community on 12 December.  The session entitled “Shaping Mindsets towards Gender Equality” saw 42 female and male participants coming together to discuss specific areas where gender gaps, stereotypes and biases persist including workplace discrimination and women in leadership.


Dr Suzaina Kadir, Vice Dean (Academic Affairs) and Associate Professor at NUS LKYSPP joined us as our Female Guest Leader. She highlighted the root cause of women’s struggles – the separation between private and public domains – and the importance of an entire ecosystem, including public policy, in making favourable changes for women. She also suggested discussing unconscious biases openly and other frameworks to address barriers to women’s development.


Stay tuned for RED’s second conversation focusing on the employment and employability of women returning back to the workforce, to be held in the first quarter of next year!

2020 ended on a meaningful note with our final event for the year i.e. our Long Service Award (LSA) 2020 ceremony held on 18 December at PPIS FSCE. The LSA is a yearly affair in recognition and appreciation of our dedicated employees for their contribution to PPIS. This year, the LSA is a little different from that of previous years as we were not able to have the ceremony during our annual dinner due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Nonetheless, we held a mini ceremony at FSCEspecially for our recipients of the LSA. We were honoured to have PPIS PresidentMdm Hazlina Abdul Halim, and PPIS CEOMdm Tuminah Sapawi, to give out the awards to the recipients.


The following are the recipients for the LSA for 2020:




We would like to extend our deepest gratitude and appreciation towards our recipients for their significant contributions to PPIS. Thank you for being the heart and soul of our organisation! 

Presidents of PPIS 

Four generations of PPIS Presidents were interviewed by Berita Harian on the future of PPIS and what PPIS has accomplished thus far. They shared more about their commitment to advancing the lives of local Muslim through PPIS’ programmes and initiatives. Read about it here! 


Interview on DETIK 

PPIS Oasis organised their inaugural webinar for couples to learn about fostering in Islam and clarify concerns that they might have. Participants heard from religious experts, veteran foster parents and social workers during the three-hour virtual event. Read about it on Straits Times, Berita Harian and BERITA MediaCorp! 


PPIS Halfway House 

In a ground-breaking collaboration with the Singapore Prison Service, PPIS has been selected to set up the second all-women halfway house in Singapore. It is expected to open its doors in 2023. Read about it on The Straits TimesBerita Harian and BERITA MediaCorp! 


Intergenerational Impact of Divorce 

CM Marjianah from PPIS As-Salaam was interviewed as part of this article which discusses the Ministry of Social and Family Development’s (MSF) study of the intergenerational impact of divorce in Singapore. Read about it here! 


PPIS Child Development Centres 

PPIS Child Development Centre (Bukit Batok) were featured in The Straits Times for their unique facilities and programmes! Here, students take part in nature yoga and have a designated space labelled Kampung Bukit Batokwhich celebrates Malay heritage and culture. 


Impact of Divorce on Children 

In an op-ed penned by Senior Director Azita, which was published in Berita Harian, she shared her thoughts on how divorces could lead to various complex issues and inflict long-lasting toll on key areas of children’s lives.