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Remarks by Mr Lim Boon Heng, Chairman, Temasek, at the Launch of the Stay Prepared – Business Psychological Resilience Programme

International Involvement Hub

7 September 2016

Guest-of-Honour, Minister for Home Affairs and Law, Mr K Shanmugam

Dr Lee Chien Earn, Chief Executive Officer, Changi General Hospital

Mr Koh Tat Liang, Assistant Executive Director, Singapore Business Federation

Mr Dhanabalan, Chairman, Temasek Trust

Mr Richard Magnus, Chairman, Temasek Foundation Cares

Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,

 

Thank you for taking the time to join us today for the launch of the Stay Prepared – Business Psychological Resilience Programme.

As many of you would be aware, we set up the Temasek Emergency Preparedness Fund – or T-PREP as we call it – to build individual and community resilience in 2014. We saw the need to support programmes that help our community become better prepared for emergencies. More so in Singapore because we don’t have natural disasters and tend to take things for granted.

It is managed by the wonderful team here at Temasek Foundation Cares.

Early programmes funded under T-PREP helped Singaporeans to prepare for events such as pandemic and haze.

First, every household in Singapore received three N95 protective masks under the Stay Prepared Starter Kits programme.

Then, vulnerable elderly and children, and chronically ill children received AIR+ Smart masks and ventilators.

These initiatives contribute to individual resilience. However, a resilient community requires more than individual resilience. We need to train and prepare the whole community for response and recovery.  

We recognised the need to develop support programmes for those who help children cope with trauma. Temasek Foundation Cares joined with partners to launch the Trauma Network for Children programme.

This helps community and school-based therapists, counsellors, teachers and leaders learn skills to better support young people coping with trauma, as they may be less able to express their fears and concerns. 

And the SMRT-Temasek Foundation Cares AED on Wheels programme is equipping taxis with AEDs and training SMRT taxi drivers in CPR & AED skills. 

Through this programme, there are more first responders, who are better trained and equipped, to help during cardiac emergencies. Indeed, we extended that within Temasek by training all our staff in CPR and AED skills.

Today, we launch a new community resilience initiative, targeted at the working adult population.

The Stay Prepared – Business Psychological Resilience Programme, or B-PREP for short, is a Temasek Foundation Cares-led initiative to build resilience in the workplace.

Why the workplace? Well, almost two-thirds of the population are in the workforce.

When critical incidents happen, employers have to manage the impact on victims and their families. That may include employees, customers, partners and the general public.

By critical incidents we are referring not merely to large scale disasters or national crises, but any incident and emergency at the workplace that causes trauma. 

Even last month, we saw how real the risk is of fire in the workplace, with a major building fire in Tampines.

The objective of B-PREP is to develop effective models for psychological resilience in the business community.

The pilot programme will be overseen by a Committee headed by Temasek Foundation Cares Board Member, Professor Koo Tsai Kee. It involves Changi General Hospital, IMH, KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital, the Singapore Business Federation, Temasek and nine of our portfolio companies.

Many of these participants are here today, and I thank them for their commitment. These parties were invited to be founding members in the pilot programme because of their experience and expertise, and their touchpoints with the wider public.

Initial assessment work has been done by the medical professionals at Changi General Hospital, with Temasek and our portfolio companies.

The Steering Committee will recommend the skills, competencies and processes that best suit the companies, as they have different operational needs. We believe this will better prepare them to cope with the psychological and emotional impact arising from crises.     

I would like to thank Minister Shanmugam for gracing today’s event.  Minister, we see B-PREP contributing to the Government’s important programmes in this area, such as SG Secure and Total Defence – to be vigilant and prepared for any crisis. A security incident can happen at any time. So it is important that businesses and employees are well-prepared.

We thank you for your support, and look forward to partnering with you, your agencies, and others across the Government as we build beyond the pilot programme that we are launching today.

I would also like to thank Changi General Hospital, the Singapore Business Federation, and the B-PREP Steering Committee for making this programme possible.

And finally, a special thanks to the nine companies involved in this pilot, for seeing the importance of resilience in the workplace and stepping forward to support the pilot.

 

 

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