LoveFAD is on Santa's "nice list" by raising money for a good cause.
The season of giving is just around the corner. While you're busy shopping for your loved ones, volunteer group LoveFAD is busy giving back to those in need.
For LoveFAD, Christmas is one of their busiest seasons. They provide gift wrapping services to raise money for charities in shopping malls across Singapore. Last year, the team raised over $34,000 dollars for their adopted charities.
This Christmas, LoveFAD, comprising of 262 youths, will be stationing themselves in several malls across Singapore from Dec 12 to 24. They hope to raise at least $29,000 for The Singapore Red Cross and Home Nursing Foundation.
"To wrap every gift, there is a minimum donation of $1 and hence, we are called Love For A Dollar. Over the years, we shortened it to LoveFAD. We thought it was cool because 'fad' also means something in and trendy," said project advisor, 24-year-old Jared Ho, with a smile.
It all started as a service-learning project at Anderson Junior College (AJC), where Jared was a student in 2009.
Now, the accountancy major from the Singapore Management University has made LoveFAD an independent project with ex-LoveFAD volunteers to broaden their reach and do more for the charities in need of the money.
Jared explained with a grin: "I wanted to expand LoveFAD after seeing the potential and the tangible good that it could do. The experience in LoveFAD has also made me grow as a person because you have to work hard and be resilient when coordinating such events.
"Hence, it has provided a good foundation for my university studies as well."
Six months before each gift wrapping event, the team gets together to plan their logistic needs, such as finding tables, chairs, and even wrapping paper.
"Some malls do not have wrapping paper and we have to buy it ourselves. As much as possible, we want to maximise the amount of money we are giving to the charities. In the past, we used to sell badges, but it barely covered the cost," said Jared.
Besides organising their yearly gift wrapping events, LoveFAD also extends their services for corporate events.
"This year, we are partnering with a corporate company to provide gift wrapping services during their Christmas lunch. *SCAPE has also contacted us to set up a booth for an event they are having called 'Naughty or Nice'," said Jared, who is studying accountancy in Singapore Management University.
While volunteer positions are already filled, you can still support their movement by visiting them at a mall near you. After all, your mere dollar to get your gift wrapped can mean a lot to those in need of financial assistance.