Surjan Singh on Friday received the Ministry of Social and Family Development Volunteers Awards for helping some 60 boys, mostly involved in petty crimes such as theft.
Singh, a retired teacher, had one of the longest serving volunteer probation career. He served for 42 years. "Trust is crucial. You cannot succeed as a probation officer if they (the boys) or their parents don't trust you," Singh was quoted as saying by The Straits Times.
"I stuck on with this (volunteering work) because I believe that human beings are basically good.
This is one way I can help in society," said the Malaysia-born Singh, whose parents arrived in Malaya in the early 1930s. Singh has also authored two books on "Saluting Sikh Soldiers of World War I."