The impact that Covid-19 will have on community cohesiveness in Singapore keeps Martin Tan up at night. The executive director of philanthropic organisation, The Majurity Trust, is most concerned about the disruption to the country’s social fabric as individuals tend to focus on themselves and their personal circles to the detriment of the greater community.
“With all the news about hoarding, discrimination against Chinese nationals and healthcare workers, in the beginning, it dawned upon us that a fracture in the Singapore society is far worse than the damage the virus can do,” says Tan. “We can and will recover from Covid-19. But we need to guard our societal bonds to ensure we can ride through this storm together.”
To spark on the ground action for the greater good, he spearheaded the launch of the Singapore Strong Fund (known as #SGStrong Fund on social media) to encourage people from all walks of life to start their own initiatives to deal with this crisis.
Its premise is simple: individuals, groups or registered charities just have to write in with their proposals on how they can do their part to help others during this pandemic. If the application is approved, applicants will receive up to 80 per cent of the project cost or a cap of $5,000 per project, whichever is lower.