Tan Chuan-Jin thanks staff on his last day at MSF

This article is more than 12 months old

Working at the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) was a wish come true for Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, he said in a farewell note yesterday.

The outgoing Social and Family Development minister, who leaves his post to be nominated as Speaker of Parliament today, said he had hoped to join MSF when he entered politics in 2011.

In a note posted on the MSF website, in which he thanked his staff, he said: "Today marks my last day at the Ministry of Social and Family was with great delight that I was posted here in 2015."

He added: "Throughout my time at MSF, I have been heartened to work with so many colleagues and partners in the social sector who are passionate and dedicated in their efforts to assisting fellow Singaporeans who need a helping hand. A big thank you to all the heart and hard work that you have put in."

Recounting his two years in the ministry, he said he believes strongly in its mission to nurture resilient individuals, strong families and a caring society.

A programme particularly close to his heart, he said, is KidStart, which aims to help families as early as possible. KidStart offers a range of support for children, aged up to six, from disadvantaged families.

About 400 families are on the pilot scheme that started a year ago.

"Early intervention makes a difference, and we want to help families as early as we can to help level the starting ground for children so they have a chance at a brighter future," he said.

Mr Tan thanked MSF staff, social service workers and volunteers, saying: "We want to develop the culture of giving and living out our values. Everyone can play a part and collectively we can make a bigger impact.

"Your work is often not easy, especially when facing difficult decisions concerning safety and welfare of the vulnerable. Don't give up and do continue to make a difference. It really matters. I will always root for MSF, its causes and its people, regardless of where and in which capacity I serve." - THE STRAITS TIMES