Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF)
Features | Public Service

Developing Singapore’s Heartware

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Behind the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF)'s efforts is a team of dedicated professionals, including MSF Local Undergraduate Scholar Amelia Leo, who strive to fulfil its vision for a resilient and caring society.

Family is the bedrock of society – This is one phrase that truly resonates with 26-year-old Amelia Leo, even after her three years with MSF. “Many people see it as a clichéd phrase, but here at MSF I’ve come to realise the true meaning behind it,” explains the MSF Local Undergraduate Scholar.

She adds, “MSF deals with many cases involving broken families and relationships and this has been a revelation for me – I have personally grown to appreciate my family more, because having a good family should never be taken for granted!”

Nurturing resilient families

As a Family Policy Officer, Amelia formulates and reviews policies that strengthen families and promote family values, with a special focus on vulnerable adults – the frail, elderly and disabled adults who, due to their physical or mental infirmity, are unable to defend themselves against abuse or neglect.

MSF candidate

Amelia Leo Shu Qin
MSF Local Undergraduate Scholar

Designation: Family Policy Officer

Studied: Bachelor of Laws (LLB),
Singapore Management University

She shares, “The cases of vulnerable adult abuse, neglect and self-neglect that we come across have been an eye-opener. I’ve discovered that such cases arise not just from caregiver stress, but can also be a result of other, more complex causes.”

Amelia and her colleagues work behind-the-scenes to form the overall framework that aids Social Service professionals on the ground to efficiently meet the needs of these vulnerable adults.

“For instance, if Social Service professionals feel that certain laws (or a lack thereof) are hindering their work or if certain resources are insufficient, we help to resolve these by conducting legislative review and asking for more resources from the relevant authorities,” Amelia reveals.

Committed to serve

In addition to vulnerable adults, MSF also remains committed to play a meaningful role in helping the society at large. Amelia discovered this first-hand when she undertook an internship with MSF’s ComCare and Social Support Division in 2008 and was inspired to apply for the MSF scholarship – a decision which took her on a journey that fuelled her passion and helped her get a strong foothold in her roles today.

Her other internships with the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) and the Legal Services Unit (LSU) at MSF further equipped her with the relevant expertise related to the Mental Capacity Act, as well as helped her establish good relationships with her team.

A passionate ambassador

Even after three years with MSF, Amelia remains very passionate about investing her time and energy to understand, empathise and help the less-fortunate. She says humbly, “I may not always succeed in living up to this ideal, but it is nevertheless something that I always aspire towards.

"I have personally grown to appreciate my family more, because having a good family should never be taken for granted!"

“On my desk I have a quote that reads: 'As the family goes, so goes the nation, and so goes the whole world in which we live.' Ultimately, it’s not solely about the 'hard' skills you possess, as your attitude and optimism will help you overcome the inevitable challenges you will face at work.”