Bridging East Asian and
By Quek Koh Eng
IN JULY 2011, Stamford Consultancy was granted a licence to provide a range of consultancy services in a large developing city in East Asia. Staffed by Singaporean Methodists, the company aims to be the bridge between the East Asian and the Singaporean communities through cultural exchange, enhancing knowledge and skills, as well as business partnerships.
The company currently provides training in the English language, coordinates community immersion and cultural exchange visits for Singaporean students to East Asia and vice-versa, and prepares East Asian students to study in Singapore by linking them up with local institutions. The range of services will be expanded in the future.
Stamford Consultancy organised an open Summer English Learning Camp in July 2011 to create awareness of its presence in East Asia. About 60 students comprising young working adults, university students, and secondary and primary school students attended the camp throughout the month. Nearly all the English teachers and facilitators for the summer camp were volunteers from the Methodist community in Singapore.
The company launched its first semester of formal English classes in September 2011, with an enrolment of 17 students. This was followed by the launch of its English Club in October 2011, with the screening of a film entitled “Charlotte’s Web” in English, attracting about 20 attendees consisting of students and their parents.
Students enjoy attending the English Club because it has a relaxing and conducive environment for English learning through interesting interactive activities. Employees of the company also had the opportunity to share the story of Christmas through presentation and songs at their Christmas party, where all the students heard about the birth of Jesus Christ for the first time in their lives.
The company aims to offer more courses catering to the needs of a wide spectrum of the community that it serves, from primary school to college students and even working adults. It also plans to offer “scholarships” through giving free English lessons to primary school students with high potential in acquiring the English language. It is hoped that this strategic contribution to community development will also help to raise the profile of Stamford Consultancy in the area.
Stamford Consultancy aims to help Singaporean students benefit from exposure to a different culture and cross-cultural interaction by organising Community Immersion and Cultural Exchange visits to schools, historical and cultural sites in East Asia. Singaporean students will also be blessed by giving their talents and time to assist in the development of village school students through teaching English and other skills.
The company also aims to help East Asian students make educational and cultural trips to Singapore to help them widen their horizon and provide opportunities for locals to befriend and bless them.
Stamford Consultancy is working out the strategies and procedures for preparing East Asian students to study in Singapore and linking them with institutions and homes in Singapore. It aims to launch this service this year.
Please consider the following opportunities to serve using your talents and resources:
• Serve in East Asia as a long-term missionary to teach English and be involved with related ministries.
• Volunteer to teach English for at least one academic year to provide some stability in the teaching staff. (Under special circumstances, volunteers who can commit to five months of teaching may be accepted.)
• Teach English or facilitate English learning activities at summer camps.
• Donate old story books and graded readers, particularly the primary levels and below, to help us build a library.
• Donate board games, DVDs, VCDs, tapes and other English teaching resource materials
• Enable Stamford Consultancy to purchase equipment and teaching aids such as a CD player or projector, by making a donation to the Methodist Missions Society and designating it to “Stamford’s equipment and teaching aids”.
• Connect Stamford Consultancy with principals or teachers of schools who may be interested in its community immersion and cultural exchange programmes to East Asia.
For more information, call Mr David Khew, Assistant Director for Church Relations, Methodist Missions Society, at 9678-8663, or email him at email@example.com
Col (Retd) Quek Koh Eng is an Area Director and Director of Operations of the Methodist Missions Society.