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Community Integration Fund (CIF) Workplace Integration Resource (WIRe) - OneWorkplace.sg
As a multicultural and multiracial society, it is common in Singapore to have employees with diverse nationalities and backgrounds in the workplace. Needless to say, when employees are able to work and interact harmoniously at the workplace, businesses stand to gain from more engaged employees who are more productive and can value-add to the workplace.
The Community Integration Fund (CIF) was launched in 2009 by the National Integration Council (NIC) to provide funding to organisations to promote social integration efforts. CIF provides support for projects with the objectives of:
- Providing information and resources on Singapore,
- Encouraging social interaction between locals, immigrants and foreigners,
- Increasing emotional attachment to and involvement in Singapore, and
- Promoting a positive mindset towards integration.
CIF Workplace Integration Resource (WIRe)
The CIF WIRe is a special scheme for companies in Singapore that are new to the workplace integration programmes, or to CIF, in support of OneWorkplace.sg. Under the themes of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) volunteerism and Team Bonding and Interaction, companies can tap on CIF funding by selecting and implementing the programme options that are available:
- Type 1: Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Projects such as service-to-community activities. Eg. Programmes from Giving.sg, HeritageCares, RSVP’s Corporate Partnership.
Companies can be reimbursed up to 80% of the project costs, capped at S$100 per head, whichever is lower.
- Type 2: Interaction or Bonding Projects that promote positive interactions and trust between local and non-local employees. Eg. “Sport the Heritage”.
Companies can be reimbursed up to 60% of the project costs, capped at S$100 per head, whichever is lower.
The maximum cap for WIRe funding is S$30,000 per project. All funding will be provided on a reimbursement basis.
How does CIF WIRe benefit companies?
Companies can utilise the CIF WIRe funding and the above available programmes to meet their workplace integration needs. The funding supports costs such as event management fees, catering, transportation, and project management.
By organising integration programmes under CIF WIRe, employees will have the opportunities to have meaningful interaction with colleagues from different nationalities and backgrounds. This will help to nurture better teamwork, develop open mindsets and greater interpersonal trust, which can translate to more positive business outcomes.
Who is eligible?
Companies in Singapore have to be registered with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) and must first register a point of contact with Tripartite Alliance for Fair and Progressive Employment Practices (TAFEP) / Singapore National Employers Federation (SNEF) to join the OneWorkplace.sg initiative and tap on CIF WIRe.
There should be at least 20 participants in the proposed integration programme, with a mixture of local and non-local staff from various management levels.
Interested companies can apply for CIF WIRe via the online application form.
Applications should be submitted at least 6 weeks before the start of the proposed project and related activities.The outcome of these applications will be notified by email.
Upon successful application, companies are required to submit all documents, including original or certified true copies of receipts and invoices, for reimbursement within three months of the end of the project.
Reimbursement will be calculated based on actual income and qualifying expenditure, and funds will be disbursed within a month after satisfactory submission of all required documents.
Refer to the Guide to Apply for CIF WIRe.
Creating an inclusive and harmonious workplace - OneWorkplace.sg
If your company does not meet the minimum requirement of 20 participants, there are some guidelines that you can take note of in order to promote an inclusive and harmonious workplace:
- Help your new foreign employees adapt to local workplaces and local culture
- Having a well-structured on-boarding programme, such as an employee handbook, is a good start to a strong relationship between employers and employees. It can also be a useful introduction to the norms, values and culture of your organisation
- For new foreign employees, employers can share about Singapore’s socio-culture norms, so that they can learn about, respect and adapt to Singapore’s values, cultures and norms, and settle in more quickly.
- Encourage your foreign employees to communicate more effectively with locals
- Highlight to your foreign employees that English is the common working language in Singapore. Foreign employees who are able to use English will be able to communicate better with colleagues, customers, and other business counterparts from different ethnic groups and races, and enhance their career prospects.
- Create opportunities for your employees to interact and forge bonds
- Organise bonding activities
- Organise activities to develop cross-cultural understanding and competencies amongst employees
- Encourage new foreign employees to join external interest groups and to participate in activities with locals
- Monitor the demographic make-up and inclusivity of your workplace
- Monitor the profile of your workforce for inclusivity in terms of age, race, gender, religion, marital status and disability, in line with the principles of the Tripartite Guidelines on Fair Employment Practices.
- Gather and act on employee feedback on the effectiveness of workplace integration initiatives.
Source: OneWorkplace.sg Starter Kit
Read also: 5 Government Initiatives for SMEs Hiring Local Workers 2020
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Read also: Corporate Income Tax Filing Season 2020: 6 Things SMEs Need To Know
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