Love is in the air this February and we’re not shy about it.
In celebration of Valentine’s Day, here’s a story of how volunteering brought a boy and girl together, eventually leading up to wedding bells ringing and a slow walk down the aisle.
While serving in National Service, Terence started his volunteering journey with YMCA Y Camp Challenge and from there, kept exploring different volunteering opportunities with the organisation.
Halfway across the island, Melanie, a Polytechnic student then, discovered volunteering as a way of life and she wanted to continue giving back.
Boy Meets Girl
Little did they know that one year later, their paths would cross while volunteering. Melanie and Terence met while volunteering at the YMCA Y Camp Challenge, a camp for the intellectually and physically challenged. “We didn’t have a lot of time to interact during the camp except a quick smile and simple hi, but we got to know each other more while travelling home together after camp.” Melanie cheekily adds that she ‘abandoned’ her friend so she could take the train home with Terence that day.
After bumping into each other again some time later, the two decided to keep in touch via Facebook and eventually started chatting via whatsapp.
About half a year later, the duo started dating. Terence shares that it was Melanie’s focus to serve the needs of beneficiaries that caught his eye. For Melanie, it was that they shared a similar goal of wanting to bless the beneficiaries.
While they were together, they continued volunteering, sometimes with organisations that they were passionate about and other times together to support each other’s event. For instance, Terence was looking for someone to teach art to community kids under a Uni-Y programme. He then roped in Melanie who was freelancing as an art teacher at that time to volunteer with them. After volunteering together, the passionate duo takes time to discuss and share feedback with each other so that they can do better at future events.
Boy Marries Girl
Fast forward a few years to 2018 and the couple walked down the aisle. It was a union of two like-minded individuals, passionate about helping the community around them. That initial volunteering opportunity was so special that the couple made sure to go back to YMCA to shoot their wedding pictures together!
More than just finding love, both of them have gained new found friendships through volunteering. In fact, most of the groomsmen and bridesmaids were fellow volunteers who turned good friends over this nine year journey of volunteering.