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Archive for August, 2008

Today was fun, exciting and inspiring!

Many many people came over to our booth to take a look at the wonderful concept of making soap from used cooking oil:D We were so busy that most of us could only start eating dinner at around 9+. There were some people who were very interested in learning how to make soap and signed up for the workshops. To say the least, that was really satisfying and is a testimony of our project’s effectiveness and feasibility.

2 of our RGS friends, Rebecca and Mabel, came down to help. Another lady, Ms Elaine, an ex-workshop participant from WINGS, delighted us by coming down to promote our cause – and even went onstage during our alloted ‘airtime’ to share about her soap-making experience!

Take a look at the photos!

What a busy day!

What a busy day!

Our booth!

Our booth!

Look at how much interest we have generated!

Look at how much interest we have generated!

Explaining happily to the curious!

Soap display samples

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Our nicely set up booth

Our nicely set up booth

It is finally here and Day 1 is over! After making much preparations for our Outreach at Toa Payoh, we have successfully conquered our first day of advocating for our project. Upon reaching, we dished out all our publicity materials and samples of our soap. As you can see, there are also materials that are required during the soap making process on display. During our outreach, we gave our brochures and for the lucky few, guidebooks on how to make soap in both English and Mandarin. It was rather difficult to initiate a conversation with someone you never knew. However, after a few tries, most of us became more accustomed to the idea that we had to step out and start a conversation with those that may be interested in out project or the idea that we are advocating for.

Group photo Day 1

Group photo Day 1

Here’s a group photo that we took when there were less human traffic at the start of the programme that day. Siti (in photo) and Rebecca, two of our RGS friends, kindly volunteered to help us during the outreach. Below are also photos that we have taken during the course of the outreach today. Everything went rather well other than the presentation that we trusted we could have done much better. On the other hand, despite our fatigue, we were much encouraged by the number of people who signed up to show their interest in learning how to recycle used cooking oil into soap.

Explaining our project to the public

Explaining our project to the public

Interviewing the public to gain more insight

Interviewing the public to gain more insight

Educating the public on appropriate disposal of used cooking oil

Educating the public on appropriate disposal of used cooking oil

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The four of us! (Jiayi, Yujin, Samantha and Brenda)

The four of us! (Jiayi, Yujin, Samantha and Brenda)

On the 19th and 26th of August, four of us ( Samantha, Yujin, Brenda, Jiayi) went down to Bishan Community Center to conduct a highly amusing yet informative soap-making from used cooking oil workshop for WINGS participants. Although we did not have full attendance, words like ” disheartened” and ” disappointed” simply did not exist and our spirits remained as high, or even higher.

It was fortunate that we managed to catch a cab and reach Bishan CC early, for preparation took longer than expected! (Ideally, barely 10 minutes was allocated for preparation) There were a few ladies who arrived early and they seemed impressed by the DIY kits that was laid out on their chairs! (I personally though that it was rather amusing that some participants had the impression that the bags were someone else’s and thus, was used as a device to “chok” a seat-truly reflective of the Singaporean kiasu culture.)

Being a presenter, I would have to admit that the idea of presenting/teaching soap making techniques was rather scary, for not only were many questions asked, but the soap making progress was hugely varied for many participants, thus it was essential to ensure that everyone is following and not lost or confused. However, it was heartening to note that there was a strong interest in our project and the possibility of the continuation of soap making at home, for numerous concerns regarding the availability of sodium hydroxide were repeatedly directed to us. I was glad to note that most, if not all, ladies were very very attentive and patient, especially during the tracing stage, and took the initiative to raise pertinent questions

Many, many thanks to my dear group members who extended help to all participants and made them feel comfortable and at ease. Somehow , their professional manner in the handling of queries left a lasting impression on me too, emphasizing of the need for teamwork!

D

A very vibrant and friendly WINGS participant:D

Look! It's SOAP made from used cooking oil!

Look! It's SOAP made from used cooking oil!

D

A WINGS lady:DWaiting for the temperature to standardise!

GROUP PHOTO!

GROUP PHOTO!

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The 4 of us present at the 4th and 11th August workshop for WINGS
The 4 of us present at the 4th and 11th August workshop for WINGS

On the 4th of August 2008, Oiliet of Project GREASE had their inaugural workshop with participants from WINGS. It was indeed a very enriching experience for us as we had learnt how to communicate with people from the public. Before this, we only had the workshop with Jumpstart, which not all of us were present for, that requires greater interaction between us and people whom we can count as strangers.

Talia-Monitioring the temperatures of the oil and sodium hydroxide

Monitioring the temperatures of the oil and sodium hydroxide

This is a picture of Talia in action during the workshop, actively helping the participants monitor the temperatures of the oil to make sure that it would match the temperature of the sodium hydroxide that it will soon have to be mixed with. Through such demonstrations and assistance, we wish that the workshop participants would gain more knowledge about soap making.

When we first arrived on the first day of the workshop, most of the participants were already ready and seated in the lecture room. We felt rather guilty for delaying part of the workshop, as we had taken a longer time to leave the school compound than expected and hailing a cab was not quite successful. Upon reaching the CC, we had to lug the bags of workshop materials to the third floor. Thankfully, the participants were all understanding and forgave us almost immediately for arriving late. Despite the fact that the duration of the 2 workshops added together are shorter than a school day, we still managed to build rather good relationships with the participants within 6 hours of the workshop.

The teaching process - US in action

Look at how well we are communicating with the participants! We were really overjoyed and satisfied that we were able to spread the message that we have been advocating for through the process of this workshop.

On the 11th of August, the workshop went more smoothly. This time, the participants were encouraged to bring their own fragrances from home to add into their own soap. We also had discussions and suggestions, of what to be added to their soap or how their soap should be attended after the workshop, carried out. They were also written on the board so as to give the participants a clearer idea of the fact that the soap making process is highly flexible. Enough of us talking and demonstrating already! Have a look at our workshop participant in action!

Elaine - Our workshop participant in the process of creating her own soap

Elaine - Our workshop participant in the process of creating her own soapIn addition, on the 2 days of the workshop, we were also interviewed so as to prepare for a video that might be used in out next outreach programme PMS. Do look out for it and support us! Meanwhile, we just want to express our appreciation for the particiants who showed us support during the workshop and all those who made it possible for us to thoroughly enjoy the workshop process.Mrs Lee helping us with the explanations

Last but not least, many thanks to Mrs Lee who made the effort to come down to assist us during the workshop!

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