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Showing posts from July, 2013

A Quasi-diary: Kindness Seen from the Perspective of a Teen

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by Guest blogger Sabrina Ma, 16, a senior high student from San Jose, California

I came to Singapore expecting to be surrounded by uptight conservatives, arrested for chewing gum, and walking on sterilized sidewalks doused in antiseptic. But, as I stepped into the SKM office for the first time, with kindness paraphernalia littering the floor and embellishing the walls, and gregarious members of the SKM team greeting me, all of my stereotypes were shattered.

Hi! I’m Sabrina Ma. I am 16 a year old senior from San Jose, California. As a high school student, I’ve faced my share of Goliaths, ranging from intense stress induced by academics competitiveness to self-consciousness induced by the societal depiction of beauty. Desiring to make high school a bit more bearable, I established a club at my school called the Acts of Random Kindness (ARK) Club, which has become pretty impactful in my (and surrounding) communities. Desiring to spread kindness utilizing social media, my friend and I lat…

Kindness By Any Other Name

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Last weekend, I was kept busy with the kindness business. I was privileged to have been one of the speakers at two inaugural conferences. On Sat morning, I was at the Keep Singapore Clean Conference organized by the Public Hygiene Council, and I spoke on “Keeping Clean: The Japanese Experience”. In the afternoon, I attended the Singapore Scouts Association’s Annual General meeting as a member of its Council. And on Sunday afternoon, I spoke at the Metta Convention organized by Singapore Buddhist Federation. “Metta” means loving kindness and I spoke on “Hearts Reach Out” in line with their theme “Meeting of Hearts.”

What have these events in common?

The simple answer is that kindness is the common element in all of them. Keeping the environment clean is about kindness to the environment and to one another. Kindness is essentially “other-centredness” or selflessness. It is about consideration for others by giving careful thought and attention to the needs of others.

In sharing the Japa…