Board members Profile
Nilofar Iyer is a Singaporean and married with two teenage girls. She graduated from NUS with a degree in Business Administration but she never predicted social work will be her call. Nilofar with her family lived in Pennsylvania, America, briefly and was distraught to see marginalised families without support.
Having faced uncertain times during her youth, she felt she could relate to the plight of these families and was determined to help the low income families here in Singapore when she returned in 2015. Nilofar founded Helping and Empowering our Neighbours (HEN) in 2018 with a group of like-minded passionate women. Nilofar strongly believes in empowering each and every member of the family with skills to see them through their life journey. In the near future, she hopes to see a reduction (and hopefully an eradication) of inequality in Singapore.
The moment Jean Lim learnt that the mission of HEN is to reach out to low income families of single parent backgrounds, she knew it is through this welfare organisation that she could and hope to contribute in helping to uplift the quality of life of children from single parent families.
Jean grew up in one and is able to identify the difficulties and challenges these children faced in their everyday lives. She feels that it will be wonderful that these families receive as much support and care to lead fruitful lives through HEN’s efforts.
Bridget has lived away from Singapore for extended periods of time, and volunteerism is part and parcel of her everyday life.
Her stay in Bangkok has given her the opportunity to witness and understand the diversity in different cultures. And observing how the wealth-poverty divide has exacerbated the hardship of the poor touched her deeply.
Yet, it also allows her to truly appreciate Singapore as a place of immense opportunities which has enabled her people to achieve socioeconomic affluence in unprecedented momentum over a short period of time. However, there are people here whom are still in need; may it be that they have been dealt a life blow or have fallen through the cracks of the system, etc. And Bridget feels called to help.
While living in Canada, she was actively helping in family services, women’s shelters, and charity shops. Now back in Singapore, she is continuing her work with coaching and mentoring women looking to rejoin the workforce, and through HEN to help families and women in need, so that they can gain/regain a foothold in society.
Bridget believes in the maxim that one should make the world a better place than when one came to it.
Key Management Personnel
Armelle is french and has moved to Singapore with her family 3 years ago after living a few years in Hongkong and London. She is passionate about helping others and has been part of HEN as soon as she heard about it. Armelle worked in medical and IT areas and likes to pass her knowledge about nutrition and health to others. She believes in helping children to become the best they can and is trying to make people happy around her, especially those who are less lucky in life. Armelle hopes that HEN will continue to grow and have a bigger impact on the society.
Surabhi Singh Raghuvenshi
Surabhi joined HEN in early 2019 as a donor and in no time started volunteering for the organisation. She is passionate about working with kids so at first started with HEN’s Early Reading Plan and then became a full fledged committee member. HEN as an organisation consists of a group of volunteers coming from different nationalities and backgrounds working together and that’s what motivated Surabhi to join HEN in the first place. She sees herself as a part of fulfilling the larger objectives of HEN in near future.
Rashmi Sharma shifted to Singapore with her family in 2018 and she is a mother of a teenage son. She is currently studying for a diploma in Buddhist Psychotherapy and Counselling. This subject is always been close to her heart. Rashmi came to know about HEN from Nilofar. She wants to contribute to the society in any form.
Lidya Chandiramani is 43 years of age and a mother to two children, 19 and 18 years old. Lidya is passionate about helping people and about social causes. She is an active member in Bedok Women’s Executive Committee (WEC), East Coast and is currently helping with Covid-19 efforts under the Health Promotion Board. Lidya is an easy going friendly and accessible person who can adapt to any culture and have friends and acquaintances from diverse backgrounds. She celebrates diversity and holds human connections in high regard. If given the opportunity, Lidya will give her best efforts as a part of HEN to make peoples lives better.
Brenda is Singaporean and married with two children, 12 and 15. She first started volunteering at an eldercare facility and has since volunteered in soup kitchens, charity drives and health support facilities. After working in a bank for many years, she decided to become a stay-at-home mum. She currently freelances as a language editor and dabbles in a bit of personal training. She loves long-distance trail running, reading, crocheting and playing the piano.
Brenda feels that having led a privileged life, it is only right for her to give back to the community and help those less fortunate than herself. Through HEN, she hopes to bring more opportunities to the less privileged so that they can lead happier, more fulfilling lives. She looks forward to learning from fellow volunteers and hopes that her family will one day join her in future volunteering activities.
Sukanya Pushkarna moved to Singapore almost 10 years ago after a 23-year stint in the USA. She loves working with women and have enjoyed volunteering at the Indian Women’s Association for almost eight years. She has also been volunteering with Soroptimist International Singapore Orchid club and is currently its president.
Sukanya has been a docent with FOM since 2015 and guide at the ACM and IHC. Sukanya loves travelling, learning new things, meeting people from different walks of life, and helping those who are less fortunate than herself. She also enjoys music and reading.
Sukanya is most energized by opportunities to engage with women, learning from them, supporting and building confidence in them. Sukanya has come to HEN with volunteering on her mind and a willingness to help empower and mentor all the women that this organization serves. She is also looking forward to learning from her fellow committee members.
We believe her wealth of experience and knowledge will be be very useful for HEN.
Nilza is from Leh Ladakh, a very remote district in North India. She is now based in Singapore since 2010, working as a Captain on Airbus 320 with Scoot Air. Nilza’s husband is working with SilkAir as Captain on Boeing 737 and her daughter is studying medicine at Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.
Nilza personally feels that God has been very kind to her and her family and she has been given so much in life. She believes that it is important to give as well and to help people in need.
Nilza is very passionate about women empowerment, children and single parenting so when she came to know about HEN and its Mission, she instantly knew this is the place and people she want to work with. Nilza is eager to help and learn more about HEN’s mission, success and challenges in serving the community.
Joshua Kyaw Swar Win Myint
Kyaw Swar Win Myint (Joshua) is a native from Myanmar (Burma). He has been doing business and living in Singapore since 2005. He is working in his profession as a Back Up Planning Consultant and is an experienced Business Management Leader in the private sector overseas and in Singapore. With his profession and experience, he pursues his passion and momentum to help plant the seeds of the future for others.
He is the breadwinner of a family, living together with his three daughters and wife in Singapore. His strong belief is that “FAMILY is the Strongest Support System for everyone and is very important to maintain”.
With HEN, he is not only empowered to cater to the needs of individuals and families, but is also strongly convinced that HEN enhances another professional skill set for him with a full suite of resources aimed at helping individuals assimilate and apply what he has experienced with a strong background of more than 25 years in the Business Profession.
He wants to create significant milestones where he is not just earning a living, but also being empowered to make a real difference in people’s lives. This has helped him and led him to initiate a Charity Bookdrive for Children of Myanmar when he joined the HEN Team.
He wholeheartedly feels he can do more than what he can think of when helping and empowering people’s needs. Together with the HEN Team, he is not afraid to give up the GOOD to go for the GREAT, and constantly works on bigger dreams and goals!