“We teach them how to fish instead of just giving,” says Lien AID CEO

While he is the head of the non-profit organisation, Lien AID CEO Mr Koh Lian Hock maintains, ” I don’t believe in charity.” Rather, he believes in empowering benefactors with skills to continue whatever work the agency has started.

“We teach them how to fish, instead of just giving,” he says. “I believe (our partners) like our approach of helping to set up social enterprises… and the fact that we focus a lot on sustainability and capacity building.”

With a team of just 17 full-time staff, Mr Koh says it is even more important to run the organisation like a corporate firm, adding that “95 per cent of the way we work must be the same – efficient and effective.”

“The only difference is the bottom line. In commercial firms, it’s about making money but in our case, it’s about servicing the beneficiaries. That’s where you get satisfaction, and that’s something you cannot measure.”

Read how Lien AID’s CEO leads drive to make clean water accessible in rural Asia.