Interview with A
Super senior Volunteer
We interviewed Aunty Siew Lang, a senior member at Cornerstone Senior Centre who shared her outlook on life and experience as a volunteer with us.
Hello, I’m Chng Siew Lang, 81 years old. People call me “Aunty Siew Lang” at the senior centre. I have a son and two grandchildren. My hobbies are sewing, making handicraft, gardening, cooking and exercising. I picked up sewing skills at the age of 19 years old and I used to work as a seamstress before I got married. After I got married, I became a full-time housewife and mother.
When did you join CSC?
I joined Cornerstone Senior Centre (CSC) as a member when it first opened in 2019.
Why did you join CSC?
I live nearby the centre, and since I have nothing much to do at home, I decided to join CSC to socialise with people and learn new things to pass my leisure time. I go to the centre almost everyday now and it is like a second home to me. I make new friends there and I really enjoy myself with activities like morning exercise sessions, enriching workshops or simply doing my handicraft works there.
Why did you decide to volunteer at CSC under the Supersenior programme?
I love sewing and creating handmade items like bags and pouches. By volunteering at CSC, I get to do what I enjoy doing and help others at the same time. It enables me to pass my time more meaningfully. I also find satisfaction and joy in seeing customers purchase and use the items that I make, while the sale proceeds can be used to help the needy people at the same time.
What do you have to do as part of the volunteer work?
I help to run the Barn (a thrift shop) once a week as a cashier and to man the shop at the senior centre. Besides that, I also design, sew and create handmade items like bags, pouches, accessories such as tissue holders, keychains etc to be sold under “Cornerstone Crafts” label for fundraising purpose by Cornerstone Community Services.
Are there any challenges you face as a volunteer? How do you overcome them?
To be honest, I don’t face any challenges as a volunteer. I generally do not like to overthink or dwell on negative things beyond my control, and this helps me to maintain a positive outlook on life. At the same time, I also take care of myself physically by having a regular sleeping routine, watching my diet (eg. eating more homecooked food and less fried stuff/sugar), exercising regularly and doing the things that I enjoy. I also try to attend workshops for enrichment purpose, and this help me to find inspirations for my on-going design and handicraft works.
Any words of encouragement to get more people to volunteer at the senior centre?
Volunteering is a great way to expand your social circle, learn new things and help others at the same time. Life is more fulfilling and not so boring by staying at home the whole time.