Volunteer-run initiative repurposing donated Valentine's Day flowers to give to S'pore frontline staff

The flowers will be made into bouquets and given to staff at TTSH.

Jane Zhang| February 13, 08:55 PM

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, love is in the air and flowers and chocolates are in the supermarkets.

Unfortunately, this year's season of love is being obscured by the rising cases of Covid-19 in Singapore, which has caused many frontline staff to have to put in extra hours at work while also facing discrimination outside of work.

A local social initiative is working to pass on the love to those at the frontlines of the situation by collecting Valentine's bouquets to repurpose and give to those integral individuals.

Collecting flowers to repurpose

Refresh Flowers SG (RFSG) is a volunteer-run ground-up initiative founded in 2016 that repurposes donated wedding flowers to donate to hospice and palliative care homes.

Here's a picture of RFSG volunteers repurposing bouquets for patients and nurses at Tan Tock Seng Hospital in July 2019:

refresh flowers Photo via Instagram / refreshflowers.sg.

And here was the final product, of which they made almost 100 - a petite bouquet:

refresh flowers Photo via Instagram / refreshflowers.sg.

RFSG put out an open call in a

target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Facebook post on Thursday, Feb. 13 for people to donate their Valentine's bouquets, which would be given to frontline and healthcare workers.

"Amidst all the uncertainty, we could all show a little more support and love. Share and contribute with us ???", they wrote.

For those interested in contributing to the cause, the collection time will be Saturday, Feb. 15 from 10am to 12pm.

The drop-off point is located at The Red Box Somerset.

refresh flowers Photo via projectweforgot.com.

According to an FAQ posted by RFSG, only fresh flowers in good condition and without withering petals will be accepted.

People can also feel free to donate single stalks of flowers, as long as they are fresh.

Florists who are interested in contributing bulk donations can do so by contacting them at [email protected]

RFSG told Mothership that donated flowers would be made into bouquets by their core team of volunteers and donated to Tan Tock Seng Hospital later that day.

Other ways to contribute

They also encouraged members of public to write thank you notes in comments or direct messages to their

target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Facebook and Instagram pages.

These digital thank you notes will then be written on cards and attached to the flower bouquets to be given to the frontline workers.

For those who are unable to participate in this open call for donations, RFSG suggested in their Facebook post that they still do their part by spreading kindness:

"If you know of friends or family working in healthcare, or members of the public in uniform, show your support with a smile and words of encouragement. A small act of kindness goes a long way."

refresh flowers Image via Facebook / Refresh Flowers SG.

Precautionary measures in light of Covid-19

In order to reduce the risk of infection at the drop-off point, RFSG's team will be conducting temperature screening on site and collecting donors' details for contact tracing.

In addition, the team will be handling and disinfecting the flowers appropriately prior to gifting them to the hospital staff.

Thus, they have instructed potential donors to only donate during the two-hour window at Somerset and not to bring bouquets directly to the hospital, so as to not overload the hospital staff.

You can read their full Facebook post here:

Those interested in volunteering with RFSG can look out for their open calls for volunteers on their social media pages, and register on their giving.sg page.

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Top image via Refresh Flowers SG's Facebook and Instagram pages. 

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