Monday, November 23, 2015

Important for VWOs to organise themselves well: Tan Chuan-Jin

Saw the news on the Channel NewsAsia in regard to the "Important for VWOs to organise themselves well: Tan Chuan-Jin", which I personally agreed to what he had said in the interview video, click HERE. At Project Awareness, through our monthly distribution, weekly house visiting and follow-ups by our team and volunteers, we are still manageable and trying to improve our system further.

Project Awareness also worked closely with a couple of Senior Activity Centres and Family Service Centres in Singapore, as well as Social and Family Development (MSF) and Singapore Kindness Movement (SKM). I also constantly contribute my part to promote volunteerism and kindness through my public music performance, media interview and social media platform. 

In addition, Project Awareness also worked with a number of volunteer groups and corporate companies in serving our beneficiaries too. I hope to see more people, more volunteer groups and corporate companies stepping forward with your helping hand to build a more gracious Singapore together with us. 

Project Awareness Facebook: Click HERE.


News from Channel NewsAsia: Voluntary welfare organisations need to organise themselves well, to ensure that volunteers can help in a more meaningful way and meet real needs, said Social and Family Development Minister Tan Chuan-Jin.

He said this on the sidelines of a visit to some rental flats in Chai Chee Road, which were being spruced up. Some of these residents faced a bed bug infestation, and volunteers helped to fumigate and clean the units.

"If you have a lot of volunteers who want to come in and help, but you're not organised well, it's going to be a poor experience and you could turn people off and you're not going to be very effective in your help," said Mr Tan.

He said one way this can be done is through longer-term corporate partnerships, which can lead to a win-win situation for both the beneficiaries, and the employees who are volunteering.

"The beauty of a long-term partnership is that the employees who are volunteering - we find that many people want to get more regularly involved. Because they get to know the people, and you're not just anonymously helping someone and then move on and have no idea what happens in their lives. You actually become interested in someone else's life, and I think that's when the real change happens," said Mr Tan.

Mr Tan also said with Singapore's ageing population, there is a need to ensure there are programmes in place to support the elderly, whether or not they fall into the low-income bracket.

"I'm actually quite concerned about those who are ageing in the private estates. Because isolation could sometimes even be more pronounced in those areas," he added.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Know more about Kata and the founder - Mr David Chen

Have you heard of Kata? To many of my music fans and supporters, they know this brand as previously I was using Kata i3s, but recently I upgraded to Kata i4 as Kata founder and CEO Mr David Chen felt that it is time for me to progress with Kata. 

Apart from Kata i4, I also try out Kata T4 tablet and Kata box, and I'm really amazed by how Kata improve for the past one year. I will be writing a review on Kata i4 smartphone, Kata T4 tablet and Kata box soon. But just want to share with all my friends, Kata box quite cool and you must get one for your family. This is the video by my good Taiwan buddy Hayden Chen, sharing his experience on Kata box.

If you are curious about who is the founder and CEO of Kata Digital, and how Kata is founded, you must read this article below:

Kata Founder David Chen explains growing success

IT all started when he was 11 years old and he would always find himself taking apart and putting back together a VCR tape.

Since then David Chen's quest to build his own business and merge it with his interest in technology would take him to the US, Philippines, Hong Kong, Indonesia and Singapore. It would also push him to draw inspiration from the unlikeliest persons and places.

"That's always been a childhood dream of mine. That goes  way back when I was in high school and in my college days. I've always wanted to have a business, but it didn't happen overnight. My mom said:"David, you should go get a job, and get some work experience before owning a business. It is good to learn and see the world first," said Chen, founder and CEO of global brand Kata.

And get a job, he did, in the US. He first worked with AT&T, where he got his corporate training, before moving to Bank of America to learn more about finance. Finally, he worked with Cisco Systems to learn more about technology.

Coming back to Hong Kong, he put up an IDD company. One world Telecom in 1999. As with any other business, the beginning was challenging.

"My experience is that when you try to put your idea into a business, you realize you don't know anything. You realize that you just have the illusion or the perception and you learn that you know nothing about servers, switches, and lines, but you learn what you need to do," Chen said.

He soldiered on and, four years after, he put up Owtel shops which then sold phones from various brands.

"Back in 2009, I looked around and I said 'Hey, that's not good.' Anybody can sell what we have. The guy next door had Nokia, Samsung, and i thought we needed something different, something better, something that we have that no one else has, and that's how the Kata brand came about," he said.

It was in the Philippines and in a meeting with a Japanese guy that Chen's search for a simple, easy to remember, and easy to pronounce brand name ended.

"We need our own brand. The question then is "What do we call it?" We looked around and we considered this name and that name, and we said that it must not be too complicated because you wanted people to be able to pronounce the name and remember it very easily. So, it has to be very simple," Chen said.

"And I was thinking one night, and I was thinking of what should i call it, and there was this fellow from Japan and his name was Shikata. I was in a meeting with him and I thought that Kata really sounded so simple, sounded really good," he added.

He then searched the internet and found that Kata means "form" in karate in Japanese.

"To me, it means simplicity... Very simple, very easy to remember. It's the best name possible and any Asian can pronounce it... We do business in Asia even though we are a US company," he said.

As for the koi fish as Kata's logo, he say it illustrates the brand's philosophy of "making life easy."

"We wanted something different, something unique and no one has ever used it (koi fish). This is an Asian brand and the fish represents zen, energy, and vibrance.

That's how we came up with the koi fish and the shadow of it." he said.

"In technology, you gotta catch up, number one. Once you caught up, you need to level up, and right now we are taking it to different levels. Not only have we learned, we have mastered it," he said.

This pursuit is evident in the latest Kata products - the Kata box, and the Kata tablet T4.

Chen said the Mega VPN app allows users of both Kata Box and the T4 to play games, watch movies and shows. Kata as an exclusive partnership with Mega VPN and it is preloaded and free in Kata's newest devices.

"You could play games, but you could also watch movies. Sometimes, kids don't want to watch TV, they want to play games so that is the ability of the Kata box versus of what's out there." he said.

"Our tablet(T4) has a TV folder and you can access Netflix, CBS and all that stuff. No one else has built a device like that and we have this because we're doing this as service. We're always been a service company. We started out as an IDD company. So now, this device, we flipped it to provide service, and this is what we have always been." He added.

In the near term, Chen said Kata would be focused on marketing and getting the public to know better about the brand and its products.

Presently, Kata products are sold in Hong Kong, Philippines, Indonesia, Singapore, the US, and Canada. Next year, Chen said he is eyeing to expand to Malaysia and Taiwan. Eventually, he is also seeking to venture to South Korea and other Southeast Asian markets such as Myanmar and Cambodia.

Going public and offering Kata's shares to the investors is among the company's long-term plans, he said.

"Going public is the ultimate goal. [It will probably happen] when we are ready, and I love it to be in Hong Kong. Hong Kong would be [a] nice [place to list]." Chen said