Going the Distance for Aidha!

At the beginning of 2021, Singapore based Australian expat Andrew Smith decided to set himself a challenge – to cycle 5,000km for local charity, Aidha.  

Andrew had always enjoyed cycling but took it up more seriously during the 2020 Circuit Breaker. He was going through a tough time with anxiety and started to cycle out in the mornings to see the sunrise. It allowed him to appreciate the little things and added routine to his life during a challenging period, something that he feels has improved his general health and mental wellbeing enormously.  

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New and Improved Aidha Business Accelerator!

The learning journey at Aidha does not end at our Module 3 – Start Your Business! We have the Aidha Business Accelerator (ABA) programme that provides support to Aidha alumnae who aspire to set up or strengthen their own businesses with more tailored support and significant new funding opportunities. We relaunched the new and improved ABA programme in 2020, and received encouraging participation from our alumnae! This year, as we ran the programme over Zoom, we were able to include alumnae who were back in their home countries for the first time. To make the programme more customised, we offered two different tracks – “Take Off” and “Runway”.

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Celebrating IWD with Learning Fest 2021!

Every year on 8 March, International Women’s Day, the world reflects on the progress made towards gender equality and celebrates the achievements and strengths of women everywhere. This year, throughout the month of March, we held a special Learning Fest with an exciting array of free activities and classes for all FDWs to learn skills to thrive personally and financially! Working with partners, our goal is to support more women to build their knowledge and skills to prepare for a more sustainable future and working together we managed to host 8 learning sessions over the month!

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Ismiatun’s Big Plans!

Ismiatun Iskun came to Singapore from Indonesia more than 20 years ago, leaving her then four-year-old son. During her time working here as a foreign domestic worker (FDW), Ismiatun attended several courses to expand her skill-set. With the encouragement and support of her employers, she started taking sewing courses and learned how to design and create her own bags and more from scratch! With further self-directed practice and research, she was able to create more elaborate and intricate designs and is excited to try other designs!

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Volunteer Spotlight: Laura Zaccaria

As a passionate supporter of women’s empowerment and financial education, Laura Zaccaria was moved by Aidha’s mission and recognised that she could use her skills to support our programmes. Laura has been a volunteer mentor since 2015 after finding out about Aidha through her friend Prerana, who is also a seasoned Aidha volunteer. At the time, Laura was at a point in her life where she was trying to find something meaningful to spend her time on and channel her energy and volunteering with Aidha was just the right fit!

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Employers Supporting Students!

Aidha alumna, Nurul Adim (more affectionately known as Ana by her employers) has been working in Singapore for almost ten years. She left her home in East Java, Indonesia, to work in Singapore after her family lost income and found themselves in financial need. Nurul chose to work in Singapore, feeling that it is not too far away from Indonesia and that her basic English would mean she could comfortably converse with her employers here. Nurul has been happily working with the Phua family for over eight years now since their first son, Gabriel, was around a year old.

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Emelda’s Convenience Store

Emelda Cariaga left her home in the Philippines almost 30 years ago to work as a foreign domestic worker in Singapore with a clear goal to financially support her family. She realised the importance of being financially stable, and she was determined to learn how to make the most of the wages she earned. When her employer introduced her to Aidha’s courses, she didn’t think twice about joining. Her employers gave her the support she needed and offered to sponsor her enrolment fees.

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Meet The Team!

We’d like to introduce two new members of the Aidha Team, Elaine Juan (Elle) and Linette Chan! If you’re an Aidha student, you must have chatted with our friendly Campus Manager, Linette. But did you know that Linette was also one of our riders at our recent Bike Ride? And if you are an Aidha volunteer, Elle is the go-to person for all volunteering matters. Get to know them better in this feature!

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A Graduation Like No Other!

Written by Cathy Heeley

October is always a special month at Aidha as we celebrate the graduation of our students from Modules 2 and 3. These students have completed at least 12 months of financial education at Aidha and worked hard to complete their own personal financial plans and business plans. 

For over a decade Aidha has held a formal ceremony in a concert hall with an audience, special guests, presentations, dancing and lots of hugs. But that wouldn’t be possible this year. 

How could we make Graduation Day a truly special occasion to reflect the fantastic achievements of our students in challenging times, an event to celebrate their learning journey and encourage and inspire them for the future?

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