Mr Liak Teng Lit, the former Chairman of Public Hygiene Council (PHC), once said that Singapore is not a clean city, but a cleaned city.
There is an element of truth in his statement. While Singapore is known to be one of the cleanest and greenest cities in the region, our success has been largely attributed to our cleaners. We have more than 59,000 cleaners who work tirelessly and efficiently to ensure that Singapore lives up to her reputation as a clean city.
Every morning, before the sun rises, our cleaners would be out cleaning public spaces and sweeping up every visible piece of trash. They made sure we are greeted by clean corridors, clean walkways, and clean streets when we leave our homes every day.
Singaporeans’ reliance on our cleaners to clean up after us has resulted in many Singaporeans taking our clean environment for granted. Some Singaporeans even started to regard cleaning up as someone else’s job instead of a personal social responsibility.
Our cleaning workforce is aging; the average age of our cleaners is 60 years old. The reliance on our cleaners to clean up our mess is not a sustainable solution.
It is time that we get our act together to keep our surroundings clean.
We need not do this alone. We could extend it to the community, partnering different organisations and individuals to promote the keep Singapore clean cause. Not only will we reach out to more people, but our voices also get amplified as well.
Partnerships also help to bridge the gap in expertise and knowledge but expand our network of Champions. A good example is the annual Singapore Marathon that has been partnering with Green Nudge, one of our R.I.S.E. Champions Network members, to introduce litter-free measures to nudge runners to bin their trash responsibly.
Through working with others, we extend our network and outreach to previously inaccessible markets. It also enables us to pool our resources together for better outcome.
Be on the lookout for partnership opportunities, for this is where we could leverage each other’s strength to further the keep Singapore clean message.