Meet The Beautiful People Series Story
As a teenager, Irene had to shoulder a heavy responsibility of earning money to support her family. This was tough as she was the eldest child in a single parent home. She struggled to stay focused on her studies, as she was often tired from all her various part-time jobs. From giving tuition to working at McDonald’s and hotels, Irene was drained by the time she took out her books to revise.
It was her secondary school teacher who helped her through these challenging times. Her teacher constantly encouraged her as she studied for her O Levels. He also helped Irene receive a bursary from his church when she qualified for junior college and did not have the means to continue her education. In time, Irene completed her education and embarked on a successful career in the banking industry.
She is now a Training Consultant specialising in Service Culture Transformation for local and international public and private organisations. Having received this assistance by her teacher which changed her life’s circumstances, Irene has always been inspired to help others change their lives too.
In 2006, Irene joined Beautiful People. She has been a mentor to four Little Sisters from Beyond Social Services who are now in their 20s, and a Little Sister from Gracehaven who is turning 21 soon. She has also served as a Co-Lead for Gracehaven and Heroes’ Journey at the Youth Development Centre. Currently, Irene is in Beautiful People’s Volunteer Training team. She conducts training for both current and new mentors to equip them with the necessary skills set to become effective mentors.
Through her relationships with her Little Sisters, Irene sees the need to have compassion, to listen to others with empathy, and to be willing to understand things from their perspective. These relationships have also taught her to love and care for herself more. “After going through pleasant and tough times together over the years, we have become family, knowing that even though we don’t meet often, we are always in one another’s life, ready to give love and support whenever someone needs it.”
Irene appreciates the opportunity to be able to make a difference in her mentees’ lives. As a mentor, she has learnt patience and empathy. She enjoys connecting, learning and growing together with her mentees as they go through life together. She treasures the relationships built with the Beautiful People family and aspires to continue to build enduring relationships with mentees and fellow mentors.
Irene’s dream? To enable volunteers to be effective mentors especially in community-based mentoring.