Building a Melrose Community Together

There is an increasing number of children and youths needing residential, psychological or specialised therapy services in Singapore with the rise in population coupled with child abuse and neglect cases.

In fact, most of the children and youths we support at CAS have had traumatic childhood experiences, with 100% of Melrose Home residents and 80% of Melrose Care clients presenting trauma symptoms due to abuse, neglect or other types of challenging life circumstances.

This growing social issue of child abuse and neglect and the need to do more for the affected children and youths have been constant pressing issues that we address at CAS. And while we want to serve more children and youths and provide quality care in line with international best practices, we are limited by the physical infrastructure of Melrose Home, which has served us for the past 50 years and has reached its limit of physical repurposing. Our Beyond 120 anniversary is the opportunity to rebuild Melrose Home and transform it into Melrose Village.

To achieve our vision of Melrose Village, CAS is looking to raise $22 million by 2024. As we work hard to realise this vision, we welcome you to be a part of our journey of transforming our premises into Melrose Village by:

Make a one-off donation or pledge to make a donation over a span of 1 to 3 years by becoming a Platinum Partner ($250,000), Gold Partner ($100,000), Silver Partner ($30,000) or Bronze Partner ($10,000). Find out more about the entitlements for each donation tier here.

Please note that only donations specifically towards #Champion120 for Good will be eligible for the entitlements stated.

About Melrose Village Rebuilding Project

Observations by our psychologists and conversations with government stakeholders have found that residential care is still very much required and relevant for children and young persons in Singapore.

  • Increased number of Children and youths needing residential, psychological or specialised therapy services due to rise in population coupled with child abuse & neglect cases.
  • Increased case complexities due to more mature society yet specialised therapy services are not readily available in the local community.
  • Although the foster care approach is encouraged, the fostering environment is not yet well equipped to manage children who have experienced trauma and have underlying issues.
  • Residential Care remains a key component of the Children-In-Care ecosystem in Singapore and abroad(>50% of children-in-need are placed in residential care).
  • Residential Care is more advanced in its methodology and care delivery as noted in many developed nations.

The new premise will offer more facilities for increased capacity and differentiated programmes, and a 60% space increase – from 2,200sqm within 50-year-old structures to 3,500sqm in a new building. Most importantly, the facilities will allow our staff to incorporate international best practices for working with traumatised children and youth.

When completed, Melrose Village will be equipped with:

  • A smaller group home-like setting for our residents as compared to the current large dormitory-like environment
  • Practice-based evidence suggests a smaller group arrangement with a home-like setting (like small apartments) for delivering care is more appropriate and effective for children with severe trauma history.
  • More advanced counselling and psychological services, and conducive facilities for study, music, sports and recreational activities
  • The more complex nature of child welfare cases calls for more advanced counselling and psychological services such as art therapy, play therapy, personalised academic guidance and coaching for school curriculum, as well as conducive facilities for study, music, sports and recreational activities to enable holistic mental and physical development.
  • Hostel facilities for older youths to provide a longer runway for more assured independence
  • While CAS strives to support older youths transitioning into adulthood to reintegrate into society, some youths are not fully ready to live independently in the community. Hostel facilities for these youths will allow them to experience having a space of their own while being in close proximity to the CAS staff for continuous support and guidance.

We have selected Ernesto Bedmar Architects as the winner of the Melrose Village Architectural Design Competition that was held in partnership with Singapore Institute of Architects. The team had creatively reinterpreted the boundary for a typology of “village” and produced an excellent imagination of CAS’s vision and aspirations to redefine and advance residential care for children and youth. Stay tuned for more developments of Melrose Village here!