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=DREAMS provides solutions for underprivileged children in rental flats to overcome studying challenges

=DREAMS, a local charity initiative, offers a solution for underprivileged children living in rental flats to overcome studying challenges.

With a focus on academic support and digital skills training, they seek funding to create a conducive learning environment for these children’s full potential.



Children living in rental flats might face challenges in concentrating on their studies due to the less conducive learning environment.

However, =DREAMS, a local charity initiative in Singapore offers a promising solution for these children to overcome their studying obstacles.

On weekdays, they can reside at the boarding facility provided by =DREAMS, where they can focus on their studies while also exploring digital skills such as 3D printing, video editing, or coding.

During weekends, the children have the opportunity to return to their rental flats and spend time with their families.

=DREAMS is a residential model that aims to provide after-school academic and holistic support so that each child can focus on reaching their potential for a tertiary education.

Despite over 90% of Singapore households owning their homes, families living in public rental housing may require socio-economic support, particularly in terms of their children’s development.

Layoff account executive advocates for education for underprivileged children

Jeraldine Phneah, an account executive who was impacted by the tech layoff in June this year, decided to use her time to give back to the community.

She reached out to =DREAMS, a new charity in Singapore that aims to help lower-income children break free from the poverty cycle.

In her LinkedIn post, she expressed her deep concern about inequality in Singapore and highlighted that there are 22,000 children living in rental flats who face an unequal starting point compared to their wealthier counterparts due to less ideal studying environments.

“Imagine squeezing into a small space with 5 or more family members, or having to balance studying with caring for one’s younger siblings. These children often become entrenched in a cycle of intergenerational poverty.”

To address this issue, =DREAMS provides a conducive environment for the children to stay, learn, and receive academic support and enrichment after school.

The charity is currently building a facility called “The Space,” which will serve as a shared learning space within the campus, offering opportunities for the children to acquire digital skills such as video editing and coding.

However, there is still a need for chairs in the facility to ensure that the children can study comfortably and maintain good posture during extended periods of sitting.

In collaboration with Omnidesk, Ms Phneah managed to secure chair donations for the =Dream campus to promote a healthier and more productive learning environment.

Towards the end of the video, Ms Phneah encourages other kind-hearted individuals to donate to =Dream and empower these children with access to better opportunities.

Providing a child-centric approach and comprehensive academic support

In January 2023, =DREAMS was initiated with the aim of providing opportunities to aspiring children from families living in HDB 1-Room (33sqm) and 2-Room (45sqm) Public Rental Flats, some of whom may be 2nd and 3rd generation occupants.

Currently, =DREAMS is operating with a cohort of 25 children, and the plan is to gradually include children from all six Pre-Tertiary academic levels in the residence, ultimately accommodating a total of 240 residents.

The full-term proposed capacity is a cohort of 240 residents. 

The mission of =DREAMS is to create a child-centric, holistic system of care that encourages parental involvement and fosters collaboration with community partners.

=DREAMS will offer a full range of programmes with a focus on Academic Support. Differentiated Programmes will also be introduced. These are designed according to the specific need of each age band and can include coding classes, eco-citizenship cultivation lessons, leadership and critical-thinking focused training.

Through a full scholarship, the children receive financial support that covers the cost of the programme, as well as breakfast and dinner, and on-campus lodging.

The child expected to progress to the next school level each year

To maintain their scholarship and placement in =DREAMS, the children are expected to progress to the next school level successfully each year.

In terms of safety, =DREAMS ensures a secure environment by employing two in-residence senior management staff, maintaining CCTV surveillance throughout the campus (excluding private areas), and enlisting the services of a professional security company for round-the-clock monitoring.

For accommodation, separate blocks are designated for boys and girls. Each room accommodates 6-8 residents, with individual provisions of a bed, bedding, chair, desk, shelf, and wardrobe.

Additionally, =DREAMS collaborates with community partners to facilitate access to Nutrition, Health, and Wellness programmes, ensuring that the children remain physically and mentally healthy.

Currently, eligible candidates for admission in 2023 are Singaporean citizens or Permanent Residents (PR) residing in HDB Rental Flats, primary 6 or secondary 1 students in a MOE school in 2022, and children who aspire to be part of =DREAMS, supported by parents/guardians who share their aspiration.

=Dreams funded mainly by donations and in-kind sponsorships

=Dreams, as an approved Institution of a Public Character, relies on funding from foundations and individuals.

Hence, the organization seeks your support to ensure these children have the opportunity to access a conducive studying environment, crucial for unlocking their full potential.

For those interested in contributing, donations can be made via or by visiting =Dream’s official website. For further information, you can reach out to =DREAMS (Singapore) Limited, Ng Say Lee, at contact number 69922838.

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