Sunday Times: Independent living for seniors – with help if needed

ALFA was featured on 24 June, 2018 in the Sunday Times. Reporter Janice Tai speaks to some of the founding members of ALFA.

If you are a subscriber to Straits Times online content, click here to read the article.


“Group lobbying for assisted living facilities hopes such places will be desirable model of care for seniors.

Seniors who need some care have few housing options in Singapore except nursing homes, but a group hopes to push for alternative senior housing facilities.The group of four healthcare professionals and academics is in the process of registering an association to lobby for the provision of what are called assisted living facilities (ALFs). “

Start an ALF

Assisted Living Facilities (ALFs) have been pioneered in various countries overseas, but only very lately in Singapore. A number of individuals and families have expressed their desire for such facilities, and a number of hospitality corporations have expressed interest in setting up such facilities. ALFA was set up to provide guidelines as well as services new operators might need.


New operators are likely to face different issues, and ALFA hopes to help such individuals or groups overcome the hurdles, making the process of setting up an ALF more seamless and stress-free.

ALFs will contribute greatly to eldercare in Singapore by providing options beyond normal nursing home care. This model of care ensures that seniors are well-looked after while offering the possibility of independent living. As the demand grows for more sophisticated standards of care, we can expect the ALF scene in Singapore to thrive in the coming years.

Stay in an ALF

The Assisted Living care model is particularly attractive because it provides an engaging, wholesome environment for seniors. Seniors are invited to partake in the activities of daily living, and to be open to meeting new neighbours. More able-bodied seniors are encouraged to meet their friends, go grocery shopping, cook, exercise, either within the safety of the ALF compound, or accompanied by ALF staff. Thus, ALF care offers the safety of 24hr supervision, should it be required, but also the freedom to carry on activities of daily living. Seniors will be assessed on their suitability for ALFs, and then recommended a suitable living arrangement or viable alternatives.

If you are interested in staying in an ALF, or would like to recommend it to someone you know, how many of the following can you/they do on your/their own? Let us know the results at our contact.

  1. Eating
  2. Bathing/Showering
  3. Grooming/Dressing
  4. Walking
  5. Taking Medications
  6. Going to the toilet


Work in an ALF

A career working in an ALF can be a highly rewarding one. While the work may at times be difficult, the fruits of empowering seniors to live out their lives fully can be deeply meaningful, should one be cut out for it. A range of roles are available in ALFs, all the way from transport, to healthcare, to food; the ways in which one may contribute are highly varied. Click here to find out more.

If working in an ALF is not for you, why not consider volunteering to find out more? There are many ways that you can do this, and more information can be found in Careers & Volunteers.