Meet Sasireka, Head of Home at Pertapis Children's Home (PCH). Started with little to no experience in the Social Service Sector, she now leads the Home and is a Registered Social Worker with the Singapore Association of Social Worker (SASW).
Q & A with Sasireka
What is your role at Pertapis Children's Home?
I am the Head of Home at Pertapis Children’s Home since February 2021 and my role is to oversee the overall operation and management of the Home to deliver the best possible care for the children and young persons under our care. I work closely with my team members for the Home’s continued progress.
I work with external stakeholders, volunteers and the Home’s sponsors to continue building the Home’s presence in the community.
As a leader, it is important that I listen, process and provide guidance to the staff to ensure good rapport and service delivery to residents and the stakeholders.
Tell us more about your journey in the Social Service Sector.
I came to Singapore in July 2007 with no experience and knowledge of the Social Service Sector. I was blessed to be given the opportunity to serve as a Senior Welfare Officer in the Home for the Aged for four years and expanded my knowledge through trainings under the National Council of Social Service (NCSS). With the knowledge gained, I was promoted as a Case Worker to work with children and young persons in December 2011. During this period as well, I pursued Bachelor Degree in Social Work to continue to expand my skills and knowledge.
My journey in Pertapis started in August 2015 where I was a Case Manager in Pertapis Centre for Women and Girls (PCWG). In September 2017, I expanded my experience to work with younger children in PCH. I was given the opportunity to be the Deputy Head of Home in August 2019 where I managed and supervised a group of Case Managers. The experiences have provided me the guidance to lead the Home as a Head of Home currently. With the support from Pertapis, I graduated and completed practicum hours to be a Registered Social Worker with the Singapore Association of Social Worker (SASW).
My journey in Social Service Sector started in July 2007 and I hoped to continue giving my service to this sector. It has been a pleasure to serve the vulnerable population and every progress they make is a motivation for me to do more.
What are the challenges you faced and how did you overcome them?
Being the Head of Home is a huge task and I am responsible not only on the safety, security and well-being of the residents but the staff as well. One of the biggest challenge is retaining staff in Social Service Sector which it a lot more challenging during the pandemic. With the team support and all department working together as one, we managed to overcome the manpower crunch. Pertapis Human Resource also rigorously recruited staff to fill the vacancies.
How has Pertapis supported you in terms of career growth over the years?
It has been a pleasure to work with Pertapis as I was well-supported when I was completing my degree. Juggling work and study can be challenging and there was a time that I almost decided not to continue my studies. I had a session with my supervisor and tabled out all my strengths which motivated me to complete my degree. Pertapis rewards staff duly and I am grateful the promotions that was awarded to me.
What advice would you give to your younger self, or someone who is interested in joining the social service?
Passion and patience are two most important characters for a person interested in joining the social service.
Having an open mind set, transparent communication and aspirations to learning will definitely help in their journey in the sector.
What's something most people don’t know about you?
I love Tamil Music and window shopping at Malls. If time permits will go for a walk for 30 minutes.