WE BECOME WISER BY ADVERSITY; PROSPERITY DESTROYS OUR APPRECIATION OF THE RIGHT. Lucius Annaeus Seneca
As an entrepreneur for close to 27 years, taking on the risks and tackling the highs and lows of running a business is par for the course. However, Covid-19 has given me a whole new perspective, both as a parent as well as a business owner.
Globally, we are all facing a truly unprecedented situation – the first time the modern world has pretty much shut down. The magnitude of this surpasses SARS in so many ways and I think the way we will move forward will also be quite different. Firstly, I would like to thank all our members and non-members who are part of the medical community for their sense of duty. We truly applaud you for your selfless act, and I am truly grateful that in Singapore we are not experiencing the shortages of equipment that are becoming apparent elsewhere.
As a parent, Covid-19 has had a personal impact on me. I managed to get my oldest son back home from University in the UK in good health before things became really problematic with imported cases. However, my daughter who was in University too, decided to remain in the UK. The implications of that decision (she is technically an adult), have taught me that I need to let go and let her live her life. Though logically I know she is safe as she has a support group there, emotionally I am wrought with worry that something might go wrong. My oldest son, wanted to contribute by working on the frontlines in being part of a team to disinfect Covid-19 infected sites. The training that he received in the National Service as an Officer is extremely useful in such situations (at least that is what he tells me - his way of giving me reassurance). Therein lies the predicament of a parent – our children may be grown up, but in our hearts, they are still our little ones. Knowing when to let go is always a challenge.
The last 2.5 months has been extremely harrowing and challenging from a business perspective as we have been trying to keep up with all the changes. The Circuit Breaker has been a relief and the Government’s new initiatives have been extremely helpful for small businesses like ours to have a fighting chance of surviving this pandemic. Yes, we might not be in the essential services category, but I feel that in our own small way, we contribute to the nurturing and overall development of children, so I hope we will be able to reopen soon.
Throughout all of this, there have also been some silver linings, including parents who continued to support us by signing up for new class packages during the uncertainty of Feb and Mar. We also had a parent enquiring if they could make a small contribution towards the staff's wages this month which was extremely generous and thoughtful. I am truly blessed with a team that are riding out this storm with me. Zubi, Stanley, Amar, Gisele and Ronnie (our stylist at Curly & Spike) have been truly supportive during this tough period. We can’t deliver classes, so instead the whole Powerkids team has been helping out at Food from the Heart which is an essential charity that is in need of volunteers.
The wider business community has also come together. I have got to know (online) a group of small (and some big) business owners who are supporting each other and working to change the rather one-sided nature of commercial tenancy agreements in Singapore - resulting in legislative changes. Thank you #SGTuff. We truly hope that as a community we will be able to overcome this pandemic, and in my heart, I know we will be stronger for it. Stay Safe everyone and please do continue to support the small independent companies.