We have been asked this question many times during the course of our work in the Singapore office when people learn about the scale and impact of our work on the ground – “How big is your team?”

There is no straightforward answer to this question. The truth is we have 3 staff, but Team HAGAR is much bigger because we are backed up by many volunteers who help us faithfully behind the scenes, making our work possible.

2020 was unprecedented when COVID-19 struck. Just when we thought things could not get any worse, we faced even tougher times this year. The prolonged impacts of the pandemic required us to find innovative ways to increase support for the work we do with survivors of trafficking and abuse, so that we can provide sufficiently to meet their heightened needs in this crisis.

Seemingly ordinary people, these volunteers live extraordinary lives. They have full schedules; most have day jobs or are doing full-time studies. Some were taking a break from work but chose to give of themselves to the cause. For each and every one of them, none minded the delegated duties, the long hours, or the short turnaround time given when work exigencies arose. They simply put their hands to the plow; and when work is done, ask us if there is more they can help with.

In the most trying times of 2021, these volunteers came alongside us, lovingly assured us, “We will do this together”.

Jonethan Lee

A seasoned social media specialist with extensive campaign and digital marketing experience, Jonethan reached out to us in January, offering his help for our anti-human trafficking social media campaign. Humble and kind, Jonny assisted in the campaign planning, setup of the ad campaigns on our social channels and guided us patiently through the whole process. Being rookies making our very first social media campaign attempt then, we were mostly clueless at the start. Under Jonny’s tutelage, we were so thrilled that The Invisible Contract awareness campaign generated over 5.69 million impressions and 2.3 million engagements online, making a step towards preventing human trafficking in Singapore and the region.

Jasper Yap

Running Eezee.sg, Singapore’s largest B2B online marketplace, Jasper juggles daily a big bag of responsibilities. Despite his hectic schedule, Jasper’s never too busy to care. In building a dedicated website for our new Three Wishes birthday fundraising project, we needed help with the backend coding work amidst a very tight project timeline. Jasper knew how tight our resources were and made time to help us even though he was facing some challenges in that same period too. Jasper’s ever cheerful and giving spirit is such an inspiration!

Esther Lee

Esther’s proved this saying to be true – “Volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.” We see this so evidently in this young person who has been volunteering with us since 2018. A full-time law student now, her schedule’s packed out with ongoing schoolwork, internships in between, and other commitments outside of school. However, no matter how busy Esther is, she will always try her best to help us with just about anything we need, particularly visual communication and graphic design which are some of our greatest skills needed at this point. Other than contributing her skills and time, Esther always takes time to encourage the team with her friendship, thoughtful gestures and prayers.

Mabel Phoon

Instead of using her sabbatical to rest from her busy schedule, Mabel chose a different path. Mabel came to us at a critical time in June when our resources were almost fully dried up. We were swamped with many projects then, our beneficiaries were facing desperate times and needed critical aid, and we were struggling to keep afloat. When the Afghanistan crisis struck unexpectedly, affecting our programmes and beneficiaries there, we fell deeper into the rabbit hole. For a good 4-5 months, Mabel spent long hours everyday and over the weekends, helping us with different writing projects. A highly skilled communication specialist with strong global PR experience, we benefited immensely from her insightful perspectives and top-quality work. But most of all, it was really her beautiful and pure heart that makes her shine, and the reason why we continue to miss her today.

Janice Teo

She writes and edits. She draws, digitally illustrates and animates. She brainstorms creative ideas, develops and communicates them. Her name is Janice; she’s 21 years old, an undergraduate from Yale-NUS College, and an absolute star intern of HAGAR! Even though she’s endowed with many talents and gifts, Janice remains grounded and is faithful, giving and humble. Committed to make a difference, Janice was very much a core member of Team HAGAR during her internship days and continues to support our work in different ways on an ongoing basis. Thinking back, it’s really quite unthinkable how our days would had turned out without Janice!

Phyllis Ng

More than a staff and a volunteer, Phyllis has become family to Team HAGAR. Even after completing her traineeship programme with HAGAR in June, Phyllis continues to volunteer, helping us with the creation of media assets for social media and other campaigns. Our former social worker, the lives of many of our trafficked survivors have been deeply impacted by Phyllis’ loving care and guidance. Just a message/call away, we know we can always count on this faithful advocate in every situation.
At HAGAR, our volunteers are some of our greatest rewards. Together, we collaborate, carry each other’s burdens and press on towards the goal of restoring and uplifting women and children entrapped in trafficking and slavery.
If you would like to join us in this incredible work, please sign up here and we will be in touch on opportunities.
Share This