Red Cross Memories: Andrew Ong

For me, joining Red Cross Youth (RCY) as a Secondary One student of Beatty Secondary School opened doors in ways I could never have imagined.

I could have been an ordinary guy living an insignificant existence. Fortunately, just months after joining Red Cross, I was identified as a cadet with leadership potential and I was groomed to be a Foot-drill Instructor. The recognition and the opportunity to hold an appointment of responsibility spurred me to improve myself, especially for the sake of my fellow cadets.

RCY imparted skills that prepared me for life. At RCY, I was given opportunities to organise projects. That developed my organisational, budgeting and interpersonal skills. These traits helped me in my career as a Financial Futures Floor Trader. I also caught the attention of a General Manager who noticed that a junior clerk was organising the games in the bank’s Family Day Carnival.

Having been involved in community service in RCY, I feel for the less fortunate in our midst and I help them in my own quiet way.

I also involved my daughter, Crystal, in Red Cross activities even during her childhood. Crystal later joined RCY in Raffles Girls School.

My daughter found it meaningful to actively help out at various events like Project Red Cross Love and Flag Day. These events made her appreciate the hard work of volunteers and gave her the chance to talk to the beneficiaries personally. The resilience of the beneficiaries in the face of hardship inspired her and strengthened her resolve to help them as much as possible. The four years in RCY was a priceless experience for my daughter; one that she would not trade for anything in the world.