Zoom To The North

by Marcus Lim . 4 December 2011


As part of our Deep Justice Project, the youths of Region C recently partnered the Yishun Centre of Students Care Service (SCS) to organise “Zoom to the North,” an outing for a group of twenty school children ranging from the ages of 10 to 13 at Sembawang Park. The Yishun SCS Centre is a voluntary social work organisation that seeks to enable students to maximise their potential, especially those marginalised and at risk of dropping out of school. Some of these children have learning difficulties in school and we hope that this outing would give them an avenue to discover their talents, build their confidence and hone their abilities to communicate and work with others.


It was a bright Saturday morning and a perfect day for the outdoors! At 8.30am, the first child reported at Yishun SCS Centre and it wasn’t long before the place was filled with excited children. The children were divided into four groups and each group had two youths acting as facilitators. Some of the children warmed quickly to their facilitators while some were a little more shy and reserved. When all the children had reported, it was off to Zoom to the North!

At Sembawang Park, we kicked off the first of the many activities lined up for the day, playing a simple game called Duck, Duck, Goose to break the ice among the children and youths. As the game progressed, the initial shyness and awkwardness among some of the children soon gave way to squeals of laughter and cheer as the children began to warm up to the youths and their facilitators. It was soon time for arguably the highlight of the outing, the Amazing Race at Sembawang Park! The four groups of children, led by their facilitators, went on a race that required them to do various challenges all over the park. Some challenges were simple and fun but required the children to communicate with each other and work as a team while others were a little more challenging, requiring a fairly good memory, dexterity and even aiming! Nonetheless the children met all the challenges with amazing enthusiasm and energy. The first team completed the race slightly before noon and the rest of the teams came in soon after that. Despite running all over the park and attempting various challenges, the children were still brimming with energy! After a short rest, we went over to a grassy patch to play two games, Octopus (a game somewhat like ‘catching’) and the good old Dog & Bone.

Lunch was a sumptuous BBQ spread at our ‘HQ’, which was a pavilion at the top of a tiny hill. As we settled down and tucked in a delicious lunch of barbecued wings, sausages, fried beehoon and grilled marshmallows among others, we engaged the children in conversations and got to know each of them better.

It was soon time for the children to head back to Yishun SCS Centre. Back at the Centre, we presented goodie bags to all the children and prizes for the winner of the various games. As the last of the children left the Centre, we concluded a thoroughly fulfilling outing. While it was tiring for all of us, the joy and heart-warming cheer that we saw in the children was absolutely rewarding!