Launched in 2015, the GIC Sparks & Smiles Award (Sparks) empowers Singaporean youths from high-needs households to be changemakers who want to pay it forward in their own communities.
How it works
Our Sparks awardees gain access to different skills, experiences and opportunities, to empower them to grow in confidence and leadership, and play a positive role in their communities over the long term. They are trained by experienced social service practitioners, engage with GIC senior leaders and receive a grant to support their studies. Each awardees commits 25 hours to community service, particularly mentoring children and youth. The impact of Sparks goes far beyond our awardees to reach the wider community. It has provided the mentees with unique support and exposure, enhanced the overall well-being of the mentees and their families, as well as helped our community partners, Beyond Social Services and Very Special Arts, to expand their outreach.
Delivered in collaboration with our community partners
More than 700 awardees since 2015, with 17,500+ combined volunteering hours
Six universities, five polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education (ITE)
From our recipients
By sharing my life experiences and guiding my mentee, what I’ve learnt is to be more confident, and also more responsible. The great thing about GIC Sparks is that you are not only helping someone else; they help you to grow as a person as well.
Awardee (Nanyang Technological University) and Mentor
Through Sparks, I embarked on an amazing journey with my mentee. It was challenging at first, as he kept to himself. But with time and effort, he slowly opened up and we are now close friends. We have come a long way but the road is still far and we are walking it hand-in-hand.
Awardee (Singapore Management University) and Mentor
I learnt many things throughout the programme – particularly, building my communication skills and understanding. When volunteering, it was important to listen and understand the situation of others, in order to truly understand the difficulties they are facing.
Awardee (ITE) and Mentor
Be part of the programme
For further information and applications, please contact the respective University Advancement or Student Development offices of these institutions: