Meet Zaid, a Social Worker at Pertapis Children's Home (PCH). He works closely with the children at PCH to ensure their smooth reintegration back to their families.
Q & A with Zaid
What is your role and how did you find your way to your current role at Pertapis? Share with us your journey from being a Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) candidate to a qualified social worker.
I am a Social Worker at Pertapis Children’s Home (PCH). I manage several wards under my care and help the children to reintegrate back to their families. I also ensure their safety and well-being in the Home by providing the necessary support and referrals to community services. I started my journey at PCH as a Social Work Associate and concurrently participated in PCP. I graduated from SUSS in late 2021 with a Graduate Diploma in Social Work and was then converted to be a Social Worker after the completion of my studies. Currently, I am clocking my supervision hours to be accredited as a Registered Social Worker under Singapore Association of Social Workers.
What made you pursue a career in Social Work?
I have always been interested in alleviating poverty and advocating for the under-privileged community. Prior to joining the social service sector formally, I had several years of experience in international volunteer work with refugees and immigrants. It then inspired me to pursue a career in Social Work, that allows me to have the privilege to work directly with the under-served in our local community and support their needs, especially the group of vulnerable young children.
How would you describe a day at work at Pertapis Children’s Home?
Being based in a residential setting is unique in its own ways. I communicate with different stakeholders through meetings, reviews and case conferences to discuss the child’s care plan and case direction. As the children return from school, I look forward to interacting with them and checking in on their day. I also strengthen my bond with the children over dinner where I can have casual conversations with them.
What is it like working with such young children as a Social Worker?
Working with young children requires me to be creative during my sessions. Drawing, conducting role play and enacting stories, are some of the methods applied.
It empowers the children to be involve in the interventions, goals and decision-making process while making it fun and enjoyable for them!
Have you faced any challenges along the way, and how did you overcome them?
Seeing a positive change in the children in terms of behaviour or emotional management is fulfilling for social workers. However, at times the child may display resistance to change, and it may complicate the already complex process they are going through. As a social worker, we should always follow through with the resistance and avoid imposing our views on the child. We must also assess the child’s readiness for change and bring the child to realise the issue.
How has Pertapis supported your career growth throughout the years?
Studies on its own is challenging while juggling work and family is a different ball game and I am blessed to have my family and Pertapis supporting me throughout the years. Regular check-ins on my well-being and flexibility in adjusting of work schedules to accommodate to my needs are some of the support given. Pertapis also sent me for relevant trainings such as trauma-informed practice to strengthen my skillset.
What's something most people don’t know about you?
I’m good at swimming and horse-riding.
Who are some of your biggest inspirations within the company?
Dr Sophian Kayat, the former Divisional Manager for Pertapis would be my biggest inspiration. I was inspired by his leadership style and his strong advocacy for lifelong learning to give the best for the children in the Home. He comes to PCH every now and then with a smile and the desire to help every child in the Home.