When I was in primary one, I bugged my mother to let me be a scout all the time. I even went to my teacher’s table and tried convincing her to let me be a scout. I eventually became one, and my mother had to join the parents’ support group for two years. She had to follow me to Pulau Ubin and every other place I went to as a scout. *laughs*

I don’t know what was wrong with me back then, but I was really bad in my studies; my PSLE score was 182 or something. I think that’s why I was so passionate about scouting. It made me feel at home; it was my rock that helped see me through my school years.

I remember how I was automatically made Parade Commander every year during National Day celebrations at school. That was my event; no one dared touch it. I had to train both the scouts and the brownies, and I remember seeing the fear in the brownies’ eyes during foot drills. I expected nothing short of perfect from my marching contingent. *laughs*

I was in scouts for 11 years, up till secondary school. When I left, there was a void in my life that needed to be filled. I don’t know why, but I decided to go to the National Youth Council website, and that was when I came across Youth Corp Singapore (YCS). It seemed very appealing, so I joined over a year ago.

There are parallels between what I did as a scout and what I do now at YCS. It’s volunteerism; there’s this natural sense to give back. I’m part of the Empathy Task Force, which is a team that tries to encourage empathy within the community, and we come back about once a week not because we get anything out of it; we just want to help.

My proudest moment was doing a project for the intellectually-disabled in Singapore. To be honest, I was very nervous at first. I wasn’t sure how to interact with them, but towards the end, I was able to open up to them. I realised that they’re just people too. The fact that the other youths whom we engaged understood that too made me really proud.” – Hussain, 20

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