Growing in MINDS: Intern to Full-time social worker – Joey Lam

Q1: Tell us a bit about yourself and how you came to join MINDS!

I had my internship in MINDS last year as a Social Work Intern and am currently a full time Social Worker in MINDS. I see my entry into MINDS as a divine orchestration; I really love working with clients! When I was in the Appropriate Adult for Persons with Mental Disability (AAPMD) department, I met individuals and families that fell through the cracks in the criminal justice system and felt a strong sense of compassion for them.

Q2: What did you learn during your internship and what were some memorable moments you had?

There was this particular week where I heard from two mothers about how passers-by sometimes make very snide comments chiding their own children that if they do not study hard, they would end up like PWIDs themselves. It was very painful to hear these accounts. It was not anyone’s fault that clients have ID, and it certainly isn’t the caregivers’ fault. The least strangers can do is to keep cruel comments to themselves.  

Q3: Who has made the biggest impact on you during your time in MINDS and why? 

Jocelyn Tan – our Head of Social Work!
She was very generous with her time with me during supervision. She also shared authentically and vulnerably, which helped me understand myself better in my journey as a budding social worker.  Very few leaders are personable, but I found Jocelyn to be one of the few.  My colleagues are a bunch of wonderful people too!

Q4: What do you think of the work environment and people at MINDS? 

 I would say MINDS is doing its best with what it has. There is no perfect workplace or person. People often say the grass is greener on the other side. However, from where I stand, I would say the grass is green here in MINDS.

Q5: How has joining MINDS impacted your life? 

One thing I appreciate and am very grateful for in MINDS is the trust and flexibility given. It has given me sufficient time with my family and life commitments on top of being engaged in meaningful work! Not every company can offer such beautiful circumstances.  

Featured in the Mar 2021 issue of our MINDShare monthly e-newsletter. Scroll down to sign up and get more original stories and updates from our MINDS community.