SINGAPORE: The DBS Foundation has pledged a substantial investment of $30 million over the next three years towards assisting low-income families residing in rental housing to build a pathway towards homeownership while promoting early childhood education.

In collaboration with the Ministry of Social and Family Development, the DBS Foundation announced its commitment to funding two assistance packages as part of the enhanced Community Links Program (ComLink+). The initiative is anticipated to benefit around 8,500 children and 1,400 families annually.

Under the ComLink+ scheme, parents receiving assistance will be eligible for a one-time top-up of $500 into their child development account if their children enrol in preschool at the age of 3. Furthermore, families whose children attend regular classes can receive a quarterly top-up of $200.

Families striving to bolster their central provident fund (CPF) accounts for home purchases will also receive support. For every dollar deposited, there will be an automatic top-up of $2, with each family potentially receiving up to $30,000 in CPF top-ups.

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This approach is designed to mitigate the widening wealth gap, curb social stratification, and empower families to own homes more expeditiously. By addressing financial burdens and promoting savings through full-time employment, the initiative aims to foster a conducive environment for prioritizing early childhood education.

In August this year, DBS Group committed to investing up to $1 billion over the next decade to support local low-income and disadvantaged groups to foster a more inclusive society. The $30 million earmarked for this initiative represents the inaugural project under this plan.

DBS Foundation is not only contributing financially but is also progressively training 400 staff members as befriending volunteers. These volunteers will extend services to 200 families residing in Housing and Development Board (HDB) rental flats in Ang Mo Kio, Yishun, Boon Lay, and Taman Jurong.

Their role will encompass providing advice on financial management, savings plans, emotional well-being, and other pertinent areas aimed at guiding beneficiaries to enhance their financial literacy and overall economic situation.