HANDICAPS WELFARE ASSOCIATION

an organisation of the disabled for the disabled by the disabled

Milestones

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2012
  • Centre for the Physically Challenged is a joint operation of Handicaps Welfare Association (HWA) Abilities Beyond Limitations and Expectations (ABLE) officially launched on 25th February 2012.
  • The centre services includes a comprehensive range of intervention and training.

2009
  • HWA officially launched its new Rehabilitation & Training Centre at Jurong Point Shopping Centre January 2009 as an expansion of its rehabilitation programmes and to cater to members and public west region of Singapore.
  • HWA celebrated its 40th Anniversary – “Impacting Lives, Bridging Communities” and ushered in 2009 a fabulous year end party held on  7th December 2008, with an array of performances including our HWA Harmonica Group & the Chinese Orchestra Group.

2008
  • HWA was adopted by National Parks from 2008
  • HWA was adopted by Sloane Clinic for the year 2008
  • To fulfill our mission to enhance the quality of life of people with physical disabilities and integrate them into mainstream society, HWA has introduced a new scheme named “HWA Micro-Finance Assistance Scheme” in 2008. Members who wish to set up their own businesses could apply an interest free loan up to S$100,000 in total.
  • As demonstrating h5 support towards National Service and Total Defence, HWA was awarded Total Defence Award at 3rd Tier: Meritorious Defence Partner Award from The Ministry of Defence.
  • To better understand our members’ needs and wants, HWA has conducted a Needs Assessment Survey in 2008 to gather information and update member’s particulars. Based on the response from members, HWA could improve its existing programmes and services, as well as to look into new programmes services in meeting their changing demand

2007
  • HWA was adopted by 938 LIVE from January 2007
  • HWA was adopted by Leo Burnett from April 2007
  • Memorandum of Understanding between HWA & Wheelchair Basketball Association (Singapore) signed on 30th December 2007. This was undertaken as an opportunity for HWA and WBA to work together synergistically to further promote sports and social activities in our efforts to integrate physicallychallenged members into mainstream society.
  • A Multi-Purpose Court was launched on October 2008. It functioned for various learn-to-play activities
    which has not only benefited HWA members like the Wheelchair Basketball Team, but also provided convenient space for public to enjoy some ball games.

2006
  • Launching of HWA Personal Care Service that aims to assist persons with disabilities who need help at home, at work, or at school to live independently and comfortably with the help of part-time caregivers. The funding is awarded to HWA by National Council of Social Service (NCSS).
  • Since 2004, HWA has been actively seeking employment opportunity for its members. In 2006, HWA started an internship placement programme with a year funding received from UPS Singapore.

2005
  • Celebrated HWA 35th Anniversary- Inspiring Dreams & Empowering Lives! with a first-ever Piano Recital event called “A Night with Ben & Friends” on 18th June at the Jubilee Hall, The Raffles Hotel. Performances were staged by people with physical disabilities to showcase their abilities. NMP Eunice Olsen was guest performer.
  • In the Citibank-YMCA YOUTH FOR CAUSES programme, HWA’s team- Wheel Power which comprised of HWA members and volunteers from the wheelchair basketball team was awarded for the “Best Team” prize for the above 21 category on 19th November. Their efforts in creating awareness on disabilities and in raising funds for the “Build-a-Court” project was recognised by the organisers.
  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Singapore) adopted HWA as their charity organisation to partner with in their bid to serve the people with physical disabilities in Singapore.

2004
  • Awarded by the Singapore Sports Council with the Annual Sporting Inspiration Award under the organisation category in recognition for promoting Sports to improve the quality of living for the physically disabled.
  • Member of Rehabilitation International – International Commission on Technology and Accessibility (ICTA). ICTA supports the concept of a system of linkages to create accessible and equitable environments. It advocates positive terminology and the use of accessible facilities rather than disabled facilities. HWA will proactively network and participate in the cause and activities of ICTA.
  • Member of International Centre for Accessible Transportation (ICAT). ICAT is a not-for-profit, non-government, international organisation established to disseminate the knowledge on, and support the development of, new technologies, systems and related improvements to make transportation more accessible to all travellers, especially those who are less able as a result of a disability or age, regardless of national boundaries. HWA will tap on the expertise of this organisation to work towards a barrier-free
    environment for people with disabilities in our community.
  • HWA President, Ms Judy Anne Wee was conferred the National Day Public Service Medal by the Singapore Government – the first HWA president to be honoured for outstanding community service. Ms Wee has actively served in the Executive Committee of HWA since 1986 and has made significant contribution, both locally and internationally, in championing the cause for persons with physical disabilities..

2003
  • Launch of first-ever nation-wide Skills Competition cum Public Forum entitled “BRIDGE-Towards a More Inclusive Society”
  • Jointly organised the Asia & Pacific Forum (APDF) Inaugural Meeting & Conference 2003- “Disability in the New Millennium”

2002
  • Launch of Revised Code on Barrier-Free Accessibility in Buildings, 2002
  • Launch of HWA Rotary-Skills Assistance Funds
  • Set Up of HWA IRC for Members
  • 10th Anniversary of HWA Rehabilitation Centre

2001
  • Needs Assessment Survey (NAS) of our members conducted Official launch of Revamped HWA’s website
  • Donation of 2 Volkswagen Kombi (high roof) mini-bus & 1 learner vehicle from the Land Transport Authority
  • The first-ever medical health screening conducted for members

2000

“Honorable Mentioned” for the 2000 ESCAP Human Resource Development Award by the United Nations Economic & Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific for the empowerment of people with disabilities in Singapore’s knowledge-based economy Setup of Wheelchair Repair Workshop

  • Implementation of the Committed to Life Learning Award (CLLA) – to promote continual learning and helping members to build careers
  • Task Force to revise “Code for Barrier Free Access in Buildings”

1999
  • Launch of “Access Singapore” booklet
  • Launch of Comfort Handicare Cab Service
  • Introduction of the After-Office-Hours Dial A Ride Service
  • Official launch of HWA’s Website
  • Launch of the After Office Hours Dial A Ride Service

1998
  • Official opening of The AST-HWA Computer Centre
  • Launch of the New Code for Barrier-Free Accessibility in Buildings
  • Launch of “Public Awareness Campaign – Have a Heart, Show U Care”

1997
  • Launch of our new-look HWA Rehab Bus and the HWA Transport Fund

1996
  • Official opening of The AST-HWA Computer Centre
  • Launch of the New Code for Barrier-Free Accessibility in Buildings
  • Launch of “Public Awareness Campaign – Have a Heart, Show U Care”

1995
  • Task Force to revise “Code for Barrier Free Access in Buildings”
  • Expansion of HWA Rehab Centre
  • Set-up of classrooms

1994
  • Takeover of SAP office space
  • HWA’s 25th Anniversary Celebration – open house to showcase the abilities of peoples with disabilities and understanding the access needs of the disabled community

1992
  • Official opening of HWA Rehab Centre
  • Setting up of HWA-SAPES Scholarship for members who are pursuing full-time diploma or degree course

1991
  • Donation of a van from the National University of Singapore Students’ Union

1990
  • HWA’s first Family Day at C N West Leisure Park
  • Donation of a minibus from Goldbell Engineering Pte Ltd
  • Donation of 2 vans from the Automobile Association of Singapore and the Singapore Women’s Association respectively

1989
  • HWA started conducting public education talks at schools, tertiary institutions, etc. to raise public awareness for persons with physical disability
  • HWA started a food ration scheme for needy members and a befrienders’ programme to provide friendship and emotional support for its homebound members

1988
  • Donation of a van from the Singapore Women’s Association

1986
  • Special Award by the United Nations Association of Singapore for being the most outstanding civic organisation.
  • HWA’s first “Wheel, Walk or Jog”, which raised about $20,000

1985
  • Gold Award by the United Nations Association of Singapore for being the most outstanding civic organisation.
  • HWA moved to its new home at Whampoa Drive
  • HWA was awarded a Gold Citation by the United Nations Association of Singapore for being the most outstanding civic organisation in Singapore

1984
  • HWA took over the running of the Vocational Assessment and Placement Centre (VAPC), a pilot project initiated by SCSS to provide vocational assessment, vocational/ career guidance and job placement for persons with physical disabilities. The VAPC was transferred back to SCSS in 1988 when it set the Bizlink Centre, a centralized employment placement centre for the disabled.
  • HWA started a Driving Service to teach the disabled to drive a car fitted with a special hand-controlled gadget

1981
  • Donation of 2 vans, one from the Singapore Association of Personal & Executive Secretaries (SAPES) and the other from the Rotary Club of Raffles City. With the 2 new vans, HWA started a Dial-a-Ride service for members as well as the public who require transport for hospital visits, social/recreational activities and other purposes.

1980
  • Launching of a transport scheme to provide door-to-door transport service for its members who found it impossible or difficult to use public transport to go to work HWA’s first Flag Day, which raised $39,417

1979
  • HWA was accepted as a full member of SCSS

1977
  • Set up an office at the Singapore Council of Social Service (SCSS) Building at Penang Lane and employed of 2 full-time staff

1975
  • Association published its own magazine, known as the “Singapore Handicaps Monthly”
    (renamed the “Handicaps Digest” in 1985)

1971
  • Association’s first fund-raising project – A Jumble Sale

1969
  • Formation of the Association. First registered as the Singapore Handicaps Friendship Club, it changed its name to the Singapore Association for the Disabled in 1975 and in 1976, it was renamed the Handicaps Welfare Association