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Big Hearts that Give Hope

OPSROOFUP A self-made entrepreneur, Delane Lim, 35, is the former CEO of Agape Group Holdings, which empowers and equips young people with the necessary personal development as well as character traits to achieve their fullest leadership potential. Now working as the executive director of Formwerkz’s Group (an architecture, design and tech firm in Singapore), he started the social initiative OpsRoofUp.

The movement was initially aimed at rough sleepers who had nowhere to go after a

mandatory stay-at-home order implemented by the Singapore government, as well as commuting Malaysian workers unable to return to their homes due to border control measures. Since then, it has expanded to include the poor and elderly self-isolating at home with little access to basic necessities.

Lim explains that he worked with different organisations to provide the stranded with temporary abodes at interim shelters, such as Transit Point in Margaret Drive and Safe Sound Sleeping at Yio Chu Kang Chapel – while catering to their dietary needs. More significantly, he pulled together different individuals hit by the crisis, such as catering companies and taxi drivers, to enable them to cover rental costs and overheads.

Lim reaches out to the needy through referrals and canvassing neighbourhoods. He recalls a memorable incident where he and a couple of volunteers were walking around the parks in the northern part of Singapore looking for homeless people.

He adds that the experience of running OpsRoofUp has helped him to better appreciate the simple things in life. “It can be something as simple as having a roof over my head and food to eat every day,” he contemplates. “We are so accustomed to these basic things that we take them for granted. This was a good wake-up call – that while Singapore is an affluent country, we also need to remember that not everyone is fortunate enough where they don’t have to worry about the daily necessities.”

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