Meet Sarah Druce, our star volunteer in the spotlight this month! She is an Australian lawyer by profession and has been living in Singapore for the last nine years with her family. A true sports enthusiast at heart, her passion is skiing the powder in Japan. Some of her recent travel adventures include climbing to the Tigers Nest in Bhutan and taking her children to see the monks in Luang Prabang.
Written by: Aneesha Daswani
Sarah Druce supporting Aidha by taking a picture of an article on “Impacting Journalism Day”
Sarah’s journey with Aidha began four years ago. She has mentored Computer Workshops, Leadership and Compass Clubs and has been a mentor buddy to many new mentors. Recently, she headed the training team and has worked with wonderful and experienced trainers and mentor buddies to assist new mentors. She loves laying her hands on new projects and helping the management team with various activities like Aidha’s Tour De Singapore and being a judge for the M2 business plans. Most recently she has taken on the substantial task of leading Aidha’s Curriculum Review Team as a core group of experienced mentors reconsiders and rewrites our Module 1 and Module 2 curriculum.
Despite everything, Sarah’s favourite place is in the classroom, mentoring students, because this experience is what makes volunteering at Aidha so unique. Nothing beats the feeling of interacting with shy students and helping them find their voices. She says, “By teaching them in Singapore we are actually spreading financial, computer literacy and communications skills to a larger number of people at a grassroots level around Southeast Asia.”
Sarah Druce (right) with her former helper and Aidha alumna, Norma Casinova
On a personal level, Sarah’s helper lived in Singapore for nearly 20 years without any savings and had no clear plans about her future prior to Sarah introducing her to Aidha. A few years after completing her course at Aidha, she started a rice farm, a piggery, a dragon fruit farm and bought a house for her family. She then made the choice to leave Singapore after 24 years to return home to run her businesses and continue to support her family.
Sarah is going to be truly missed at Aidha when she moves back to Australia at the end of the year though we are also thrilled she will continue to lead the curriculum review effort from there and has also offered to stay involved in other ways. Her parting thoughts include, “I am going to miss Aidha. It is a wonderful community to be a part of — our volunteers and staff are supportive, creative and dedicated. Our students are committed and inspiring. And our mission works — it changes people’s lives and gives them a choice for their future.”