"Everyone has an opportunity to pick and choose what they want to do in their lives. You can be whatever you want to be. Singapore is constantly re-inventing itself,so you can grab the opportunities that appeal to you and your ambition. Everyone makes it work for him or herself. Even though there is competition,there is also enough width for everybody to be who they want to be."
- D M Arulraj
Themin and his wife, Febrita, started the SMU Community Service Project Grants in 2010 which awards financial grants to students for their community service projects. They have funded about 60 students who have in turn helped various communities through their community programmes.
"We had decided to do this even before we had Milla (their eldest daughter). I felt that we had gotten so much out of Singapore. It has given us a life together as a family. Opportunities and a chance to make a difference. It was the right thing to do." - Themin Suwardy, Associate Professor of Accounting Practice, Singapore Management University
"We just give as much as we can give. For us,it was about creating ripples and making an impact on the larger community." - Febrita Suwardy, Senior Manager, Singapore Management University
"And what better proof of our commitment than in our whole-hearted approval,even appreciation in my family's case,of National Service - the "offering" of our beloved offspring to die,if necessary,for our adoptive country - something we never dreamt of doing in our native lands? This is the ultimate decider for many of us who come from systems where the state makes no such impositions on us. That we willingly accept this even when we do have a choice is the proof of our commitment - if any was needed."
- Shobha Tsering Bhalla
CEO / Editor-in-Chief of India Se online magazine