In one rare opportunity, Oliver Lim, a Young Adult Member Group of APR, visited Manila and spent time with Scouts under the Ticket to Life troop discover about the unique things in their way of life.
Oliver visited some of the homes of these Scouts and met their families. Growing up in a busy and cosmopolitan Singapore, he was amazed when he entered their houses walking in a dark, narrow alley, the roof almost touching the head of anyone who enters it, and a family of five lives there. A home with no proper ventilation and facilities, Oliver was surprised to meet families of happy and hopeful faces.
One family rents a small house at US$70.00 a month and that’s the best they can afford with their present earning. When interviewed, the father of a Scout said that he was glad his son joined a Scout troop. He said his son could be a good leader and is proud of him.
In another family, Oliver saw how they live in the streets, the streetlight serves as their light during dinner.
The following day, Oliver joined the first troop meeting for this year where he shared a couple of Scout songs and games. He shared his plans of encouraging other Scouts and leaders he knew to support the project.
One Scout told Oliver how he plans to share to his friends and other street children, especially those who are hooked in vices, the practical skills he learned from Scouting.
Oliver promised to join them in their Advancement Summer Camp this year.
Reaching the end of his Manila visit and seeing the daily lives of these Scouts, Oliver realized how blessed he was for having the comforts of home and at some point felt guilty for sleeping in a good bed.
“My experience with Ticket to Life Scouts in Manila was an eye-opener for me. Though lacking in many material things, I saw a lot of good things inside them, which I believe Scouting has placed in them. I admire how they wanted to be a good example to their peers, and to impart what they receive from being Scouts and most especially their love for their families.”
Oliver is a 22 year-old Rover from The Scout Association of Singapore currently studying Geography and Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.