Anthony Yeo Memorial Conference & Book Launch

The Conference

In commemorating the 10th year passing of the late Mr Anthony Yeo, fondly remembered as the “Father of Counselling” in Singapore, CCC organised a conference titled “Anthony Yeo Memorial Conference: The Legacy of Compassionate Practice” on 6th November 2019. The event was graced by the Minister of the Ministry of Social & Family Development [MSF] Mr Desmond Lee.

There has been much emphasis on professionalism and increasing standards in the social service landscape and in such a climate, the heart and spirit of compassion cannot be neglected.  Hence, the objective of the conference was to pass on the legacy of Anthony’s compassionate practice across different contexts such as counselling and casework, supervision and management.

The conference was an insightful learning experience with a great selection of speakers.

CCC’s long-time friend and supporter Dr. Barry Mason delivered the Keynote where he took the audience on a journey through his friendship with Anthony, his compassionate practice and  irreplaceable wisdom and contributions to the field of psychotherapy not just in Singapore but in the region.

The conference also brought together Ms Joyce Lye [Founder of Wicare Support Group], Mr Jason Wong [Centre Manager for the Salvation Army/Prison Support Services], Ms Malar Palaiyan [Lead Specialist, Guidance, Ministry of Education], and Bro. Collin Wee [Director, Hope House] as the Panelists along with Ms Foo Soo Jen [Principal Therapist, CCC] as the Moderator for a panel titled ‘Tribute & Legacy of Anthony Yeo and a Case for Compassion: Possibilities, Problems, Restraints & Resources [PPRR] in the Current Context. The Panelists took turns commemorating their personal encounters with Anthony and the ever-lasting impact he has had on their lives.

There were also 8 streams of workshops conducted by Dr. Barry Mason and CCC Therapists on the following topics:

  1. Compassion Beginning with Me : Nurturing a Vital Relationship with Self for Life-Giving Relationships
  2. Embracing Difficult Emotions with Compassion through an Externalizing Conversation
  3. The Importance of Compassion in Working with Mandated Clients
  4. Reclaiming Couple Intimacy Through Nurturing Compassionate Curiosity
  5. Developing Supervisory Style that is Both Consistent & Structured, Flexible & Responsive: Notes from a Small Study
  6. Re-visiting Safe Uncertainty: Perspectives for Clinical Practice and the Assessment of Risk
  7. Developing Collective Compassion in Supervision: We Will Never Walk Alone
  8. Toward Relational Possibilities with PADI

Over 190 participants attended the event.

The Book Launch

Counselling and Care Centre has a rich writing tradition which can be indisputably attributed to the late Anthony Yeo (1948-2019) who was himself an avid and fluent author.  In conjunction with the conference, CCC launched her latest book, “Weaving Compassion: Relational Understandings and Practices”, graced by our Guest of Honour, Mr Desmond Lee, Minister for the Ministry of Social and Family Development, in the presence of many friends and fellow colleagues from the social service fraternity. It was a celebratory occasion mixed with nostalgia as fond memories of Anthony were recounted by different attendees. We also had the great privilege to have Eugene, Anthony’s son, joining us to witness the various moments in memory of his father.

Weaving Compassion is a tribute to the indelible legacy of Anthony Yeo who once said, “My vocation is a ministry of grace and compassion”.  In the words of Rev Sam Kuna, the President of the Singapore Association for Counselling (2016-2020), this latest book is “a cutting-edge compendium by compassionate practitioners for a compassionate profession”.  It pulls together 16 chapters of rich ideas and practices from practitioners at Counselling and Care Centre as well as guest writers hailing from Singapore, the UK and the US.

The book carries a consistent message that our broken world simply needs our compassion, and not just our polished theory of care. It is a message that challenges us to live our compassionate practice congruently across different contexts and at all levels, not just in our journeys with clients, but also with our supervisees, colleagues and those we lead.  Weaving Compassion endeavours to be a voice for everyone who aspire to create a practice culture where empathy, learning and growth can continue to thrive.

Dr Barry Mason giving a keynote address:

A tribute to late Mr Anthony Yeo.

Esteemed panelists comprising of Ms Malar Palaiyan, Mrs Joyce Lye, Mr Jason Wong and Bro. Collin Wee, moderated by Ms Foo Soo Jen (from right to left), sharing inspiring encounters with the late Mr Anthony Yeo.

One of the participants from the floor, Mr John Tan,

responding to sharing by the panelists.

Mrs Sharon Sng facilitating one of the workshops titled “Developing Collective Compassion in Supervision: We Will Never Walk Alone”.

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