SOTA: School of the Arts Singapore

Serving the community beyond Singapore’s shores

Published on Jul 31, 2019

While many of our students serve the community in Singapore, some students have the opportunity to contribute to communities overseas in Overseas Service Learning (OSL) projects in Year 4. Year 5 students may also continue on Global PerspectiveS (GPS) trips, which are extensions of the OSL projects from the previous year.

This June, several teams of students embarked on overseas community projects to countries such as Cambodia and Thailand. Accompanied by experienced teachers, students successfully contributed to the communities by constructing roads and walls, teaching English to local children, sharing their artistic skills and love for the arts with locals, and more. Through these experiences, students learn to appreciate, respect, and care for social-cultural diversity, while honing their leadership potential and resilience amongst other skills.

Read extracts from our students’ reflections and take a look at some of the photos below!

2019 OSL Kampong Thom
OSL Kampong Thom (2019)
Clockwise: SOTA team with Tuol Dan Nak Secondary School principal and teachers, SOTA students helping to level the ground to prevent flooding during rainy season, Sand art with Children at Chong Dong Village

OSL Kampong Thom
“Rita's* living conditions proved to me how privileged I was to not only have a clean and safe roof over my head, but the fact I had my own room astounded me. Her house was built with 43USD. Here was someone with so little but yet still able to find joy in the simple things in life…” – Andrea Cheah Ke Xin, Year 4

* Not her real name

2019 OSL Ratchaburi
OSL Ratchaburi (2019)
Clockwise: Walking to school with the children, having fun and playing games with the children, preparing the land to grow long beans

OSL Ratchaburi

The Overseas Service Learning (OSL) Trip to Ratchaburi was a memorable one for the SOTA community. Our Year 4 students and teachers had set out to serve at Bilay’s House, an orphanage in Ratchaburi, Thailand, by teaching the children, constructing a road, and more. Unexpectedly some studentsand a teacher fell ill during the trip. We are very grateful to all who rendered help, including the adults and children at Bilay’s House, the van drivers, the tour guides, and the medical teams at Bangkok Christian Hospital. With their support, our students and teachers were well-taken care of and given prompt medical attention.

“When I was sick on the trip, a girl called Nisha was there by my side all the time. She towelled my forehead and arms to try and get my temperature down, and made sure I was comfortable while I slept. I feel that while that was a really kind thing to do, it was such an honest gesture for someone who only had only known me for a week, yet made me feel so loved. She made me want to be a person who'd do that for someone else.” – Michelle De Vera Cabatbat, Year 4

Read more about OSL Ratchaburi here.

2019 GPS Baray
GPS Baray (2019)
Clockwise: Painting the school building with children from Chrong Primary School, group photo at Veal Thom, teaching the children at Chrong Primary School, building a well pavement.

GPS Baray
“The 11 days I spent there were filled with intention and purpose, where we constructed a well-pavement, painted a primary school, taught day and night classes, and organised carnivals and a sports tournament for the children… Overall, the experiences I had on this trip expanded my world view and also made me more grateful for the opportunities I have been given, and helped me to better understand the meaning of noblesse oblige.” - Claire Gabrielle Djuhadi ,Year 5

A big thank you to all our overseas community partners for their warm hospitality! We also thank the SOTA teachers for their generous care and for constantly putting students' welfare and safety as priority.

OSL and GPS are part of the SOTA Community Service programme, that aims to prepare students for lifelong learning and service. Find out more about our Community Service programme HERE.