Speech by Mr Alvin Tan, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth & Minister of State for Trade and Industry at the Committee of Supply Debate 2023
[Translation In English] As the saying goes, “What is taken from the community is given back to the society”. While pursuing business interests, businesses should also proactively undertake social responsibility to co-create a harmonious and sustainable society.
[Translation In English] Businesses can benefit from adopting more purpose-driven models and establishing a culture of mentoring.
[Translation In English] More consumers are choosing to support businesses that generate value for the wider community, including their suppliers and workers.
[Translation In English] Staff, on the other hand, become more motivated, productive, and stay longer with their companies when they know that their company is making an impact on society and investing in their growth. This is especially when senior staff care and look out for their younger colleagues as part of the company’s mentoring culture.
[Translation In English] We recognise that it is not always easy to shift existing business practices. But we have seen how many different businesses have risen to the occasion, to become purpose-driven and contribute back to society.
[Translation In English] More importantly, businesses don’t have to do it alone. We encourage more companies, including small and medium enterprises to convene to discuss how to contribute more, collaborate with the Mentoring SG Office or work with the trade and clan associations in developing your initiatives.
[Translation In English] The pandemic confined our youths to their homes during key life stages such as their schooling years, or when they first joined the workforce. It also caused many to lose opportunities to gather in person and experience the outdoors.
[Translation In English] As such, we will renew our urban and natural spaces such as Somerset Belt and OBS@Coney to provide youths with more opportunities to gain important experiences, grow their networks and take on leadership roles.
[Translation In English] This also complements our youth leadership programmes organised by NYC, such as the Our Singapore Leadership Programme which has been expanded to include younger youth leaders from MOE schools and Madrasahs, that Minister Edwin Tong spoke about.