A year on, SINDA’s women empowerment campaign moving in the right direction: Indranee Rajah

Highlighting the Indian community and Singapore government’s commitment towards women’s rights, the Singapore Indian Development Association’s (SINDA) ‘Let Her Shine!’ initiative is dedicated to closing the gap in areas where Singaporean Indian girls and women aged seven to 30 face barriers and challenges.

Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Indranee Rajah
Minister in the Prime Minister's Office and SINDA president Indranee Rajah (front row centre) with other members and mentors and delegates of the 'Let Her Shine!' campaign at the initiative's anniversary celebration. Photo courtesy: Facebook/Joyce Kinglsly

Minister in the Prime Minister's Office Indranee Rajah, who also serves as SINDA president, inaugurated the initiative last year. Last month, she  launched ‘Mentorship to Let Her Shine!’, which aims to nurture the career aspirations of young Singaporean-Indian women by providing them with career mentoring and access to female role models.

“While the LHS journey is only one-year-old, we do think that we are in the right direction. We felt that what would be important would be for them to not only see role models, but to have opportunities to learn from these role models. SINDA is aiming to equip young Indian women with the skills and resources to grow into strong and confident women and inspire them to reach greater heights,” the minister said in her address at the launch.

The year-long programme will match young Singapore women aged 20 to 35 with mentors from various industries who will provide coaching on key skills, leadership attributes and specialised knowledge in specific industries. The programme initially involves 28 mentors, each of whom will provide guidance to up to two mentees. More mentors are expected to join the programme in the later stages.

Thanking the mentors for their efforts and participation, the minister said that they provide a wealth of knowledge and experience, and talent and dedication. 

“They (the mentors) have broken boundaries, and they have forged paths for themselves. Their lasting contribution and legacy, is being able to guide the next generation of women, to not just similar, but even greater heights,” she added.

Alongside the launch of this mentorship, SINDA will ink a Memorandum of Understanding today with SG Her Empowerment, or SHE for short, an organisation focused on the empowerment of women.

SINDA has seen success in its mentorship programmes and initiatives over the past 13 months. It teamed up with around 20 national agencies and women's groups to help equip young girls with confidence, skills, opportunities and mentorships, and shape their worldview of themselves and what they can do, an official statement read.

“The campaign contributed to the development of over 500 young women and girls, giving them the opportunity to grow and excel through programmes focused on development and encouraging a growth mindset in young women,” Rajah said.

A four-person SINDA Indian women's development task force headed by Praveen Randhawa – a regional communications director at a multinational company – is overseeing the initiative.

The goal is to help Singaporean Indian women build important skills such as resilience to overcome adversity, alongside key leadership attributes to excel and compete in the workforce, said Praveen, who is also a SINDA executive committee member.

SINDA chief executive Anbarasu Rajendran said women empowerment is an important area of focus in SINDA's work to uplift the community.

"We must be able to provide women with the right resources… Let Her Shine! will help us do just that, in supporting women's dreams and aspirations," he added.