Power Kids Gym - Blog


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.

Philomena Cannon-Brookes


Mar Apr 20 CampSpring Break is almost upon us and most schools will be closed at some point in March and April. As any working parent would attest, its important to be creative in keeping their children occupied. One of the most obvious solutions is to look for camp programs for your children. In Singapore, there are a plethora of kids camps activities that you can choose from and when faced with many choices, how do you go about picking the right camp for your child? Before we delve into that, we should first look at the reasons why camps are a good thing for children. 

1) Learning new practical or technical skills.

In a camp, a child is exposed to different activities to pique their interest. In Singapore there are many camps that engage a child in different ways. You can choose a camp that focuses on coding, tennis or multi-sports, and even science camps. Your child might discover an interest that they may not know they have. The point is to expose them to a wide range of different experiences so that they can discover and explore a new skill or interest in a safe and structured environment.

2) Development of Soft Skills

One of the greatest benefits of camps is the opportunity for a child to learn with peers who are not necessarily part of their social network through school or regular extra-curricular activities. In school, children tend to gravitate towards the same group and can be perceived in a particular way because of that choice of friends. In other words, because of the peer group they associate with, they could be labelled as being “quiet” or “studious” or at the opposite end of the spectrum, being “disruptive”. Camps generally allow the child to break away from these “labels” and allow them to experience and learn with a different group which can lead to them discovering things about themselves such as leadership and problem-solving skills. Camps are a great environment for children to build their self-esteem and learn life skills in a nurturing environment.

3) Teaches them Independence and responsibility.

Camps teach children to be independent. In addition, due to the wider age groups, older children will be tasked with the responsibility of “looking after” their younger friends. They learn how to make good decisions, and also about cause and effect. These are life skills that will teach them to be resilient and face any challenges head on. Teamwork, cooperation and negotiation are all part of the building blocks of a camp experience. Children learn to make decisions without their parent’s help which boosts their self-esteem and to develop risk-taking and conflict-resolution skills.

4) Mental and Physical Stimulation.

There is an old saying - “An idle mind is a devil’s workshop”. Camps truly help children both mentally and physically. Let’s face it, most children will gravitate towards the TV or their digital devices to keep themselves entertained during the holidays. Camps encourage children to move away from this and to engage their bodies and minds fully in a new challenge. They need an hour of exercise per day - it is fundamental to their physical and mental growth.

5) It is great to be outdoors.

Children need nature for the healthy development of their senses, which helps develop their creativity and feeds their appetite for learning. They need to experience nature in order to understand the environment that they live in and how they can play a positive part in the ecosystem. Being outside is also a great stress reliever for those who are struggling with school work or on-line social issues.

Above all, kids just want to have fun, and they need the playtime that camps offer in between more structured activities. We see many children who come through our doors whose daily lives are completely planned to the minute with no opportunity for them to just play freely with friends. Camps give them the opportunity to explore and be active in creative ways with their peers. It helps build their imagination and helps them set their own boundaries.

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