Volunteer of the Month – Danielle Sim

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The volunteers at Conjunct are truly the spirit and the lifeblood of the organisation. In the last six years, we have worked with close to 1000 volunteers, both student and professional, to strengthen the social good organisations in Singapore. It is heartening for us to see the effort people make to give back to the society and we feel blessed to be a driving force for volunteers to be associated with.

This festive season, what better way for us to celebrate than to share the great work of yet another rockstar volunteer at Conjunct. We hope this post inspires you to also take up volunteering in the coming year and reap the joys that it brings!

Danielle Sim is a professional volunteer with Conjunct Consulting for the past two years. Danielle is the Deputy Vice President (DVP) for Scoping at Conjunct. Danielle has found her journey with Conjunct to be to be fantastic and enjoys working with people who share her “want to do good”.

Volunteer at Conjunct

What is your day job and work area?

I work in education and am currently in between a rotation. I’m transitioning to a role that spearheads research and use of technology and innovation in schools across Singapore. Previously, I was at a school where I mentored students and worked on improving the organisation’s external communications and stakeholder engagement.

How did you hear about Conjunct and what prompted you to start volunteering with us?

I had a number of friends who were volunteering with Conjunct during university, and even after they had started work, though at this point I had not seriously considered volunteering with Conjunct. It was only after meeting Samantha, President at Conjunct Consulting, for dinner and hearing about the incredible work she was doing that I started looking into Conjunct’s work. I found that some of Conjunct’s projects aligned well with my work and I thought I could contribute. It’s been a fantastic journey ever since.

Volunteer @ ConjunctTell us a bit more about your volunteering journey – Do you volunteer elsewhere? Some details?

Volunteering has always been something close to my heart and was embedded in how my parents raised my sisters and me. We often volunteered together at ad hoc events and visited a children’s home regularly, so after starting work I was keen to commit to a cause I believed in.

Upon deciding to volunteer with Conjunct, I was first roped in for a project as a consultant in a team of other professionals with day jobs. This project was a pilot programme that Conjunct was doing (as projects are traditionally staffed by university student volunteers). We worked with a non-profit, that had students as one of their main beneficiaries, and I provided a unique perspective from the position of someone who was deeply involved in working with students and understood Singapore’s education landscape. Following the conclusion of that project, the pilot programme also ended and I moved into a new role of scoping projects.

How does volunteering impact you personally?

Volunteering with Conjunct has made me deeply understand  some of the needs, and often even injustices, in our society which the partners we work with tirelessly try to address. The awareness I have gained through working with the range of projects we have has really flagged out the need for more systemic solutions for these problems. What encourages, and energises me, is working with the amazing people I get to meet who are excited about doing good.

What is your role at Conjunct?

I am currently the DVP for scoping (this is where the flurry of work happens before the project cycle even begins). I plan the scoping cycle, develop training for our scoping teams and subsequently work with our teams to make the first connection with partners to discuss and understand their needs. The teams then do the difficult work of breaking down the needs of the partner organisation, prioritising more urgent concerns into a digestible project scope, which we can work on with our partners. I have previously volunteered as a scoper and a consultant as well and through this I’ve had the wonderful opportunity to see the process through!

What has been your best/favorite experience while volunteering with Conjunct? Can you share one high point from your volunteering experience?

I am always really heartened at the end of each project cycle when I sit in for endpoint meetings where project teams hand over their project to partners. Partners are often very appreciative of the work done and sometimes may even ask if we would consider volunteering for them! I also enjoy meeting partners whom I have worked with previously when they request to do more follow up projects because they have seen real changes that have strengthened or equipped them and served their beneficiaries well.

Tell us a bit more about yourself – some interests, hobbies, things that matter to you.

My husband and I love pushing ourselves to explore and learn, be it through reading, backpacking or even hosting regular themed parties at our place. We also do quite a bit of baking and run a pop-up store selling our baked goods around festive seasons. We just had a baby last month though, so the little guy is currently taking up all our love and attention!

Your message to other volunteers.

Keep up the good work! We may not be able to plug every gap, or right all the wrongs, but there are real people we can still help and that counts!

Thank you, Danielle for your hardwork and dedication. Conjunct Consulting is grateful to have you as a part of our team and thank you for all that you do! If you would like to connect with Danielle, her LinkedIn profile is: https://www.linkedin.com/in/danielle-sim-818b74a4/

If you would like to volunteer with Conjunct Consulting, check out our site: http://conjunctconsulting.org/volunteers/

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