For more than 10 years, Siti Salmah Ramli, 65, has lived and cooked for herself in a HDB studio at Blk 26B at Jalan Membina but has not left due to her fondness of the neighbourhood.
It was at REACH Senior Centre in Jalan Membina that Siti found new friends and filled her days with activities. She was one of the earliest members of our centre, having been attracted by our colouring activities.
Speaking in a mix of Malay and English, Siti shared: “Since young, I had taken a fancy to colouring with pencils. Colouring for me is therapeutic and helps me to relax the mind”. With a steady and deft hand, she produced vividly coloured artworks and surprised us with her colouring skill.
Apart from colouring, the congenial Siti is a regular member of our Wednesday workout sessions and outings organised by the centre, all while conversing with the other seniors, who are now her friends, in Hokkien.
Currently, she attends the English reading class, conducted by a retired teacher, along with 10 other seniors. These classes provided a platform for Siti to keep her mind engaged and continue learning as they presented Siti with a chance to brush up on the language again, despite having had a poor grip on English while she was in school. She described her experiences in the class to us passionately, “the teacher taught us to sing and act out nursery rhymes. We go back in time all over again! She urged us to borrow two books from the library each month”.
Now, Siti is able to tune in to Channel 8 nightly to follow the local drama and read the English subtitles for her own practice and is able to discuss them with her friends. Today, she is not only an active REACH participant but also a volunteer with the centre.