Ms Betty Teo, Founder, SUGAR Club

Ms Betty Teo is the founder of SUGAR Club, a women's power walker group that promotes healthy ageing and a positive mindset.

Sugar Club is a ground-up initiative, consisting of like-minded women who have attended training at *WINGS. The members of Sugar Club meet for weekly hikes and walks, and beyond that, exchange knowledge and provide support to one another.

*WINGS is the only non-profit in Singapore singularly focused on helping women through their later years by providing education and activities focused on our three pillars of health (physical and emotional), financial security and forming meaningful relationships with the community.

Members of Sugar Club posing for a photo after completing a hike (Note: photo was taken before COVID-19)

Tell us more about Sugar Club and how it came about?

We are a walking club formed four years ago by like-minded women who have attended training at WINGS.

Sugar is an acronym - Self Empowerment, Unique, Gracious, Aware, Reflect.

There are about 20 of us, between 40 and 75 years old. It’s a big age gap, and having a name gives us a sense of belonging. Sugar Club is more than a walking club; it is a support group and a chance for fellowship. After walks we chat about our experiences and knowledge about topics like money management, health and how to handle stress at home. It’s very meaningful.

Walking is great for mental health. It makes you more alert, and more aware of your surroundings. When we walk, we encourage club members not to talk too much so that people are more focused. During the walks we will take pictures and share the pictures to see if people had noticed certain trees or flowers.

What advice do you have for people of your age group who want to keep active and healthy?

Self-care is very important, as is eating well - a good balanced diet to keep your immune system healthy and prevent chronic diseases. Exercise is very important to keep energy levels up. Pick up hobbies to keep your mind active. Keep up with technology - I’ve started doing yoga, pilates and even HIIT workouts on YouTube!

I don’t believe that I need to slow down just because I’m older. Don’t let it become a mental block. Recently when we said we were going to walk 10,000 steps, some members immediately said no, I can’t do it. But with determination and positive affirmation, we managed to complete 14,000! It’s all about having a positive mindset.

What would Sugar Club like to achieve from your participation in Walk for Mental Wellness?

We hope to raise awareness for mental wellness and to raise funds for a good purpose. We hope that the campaign can spread the message that if you think you have got a mental illness, please seek help, join a support group and do not struggle by yourself.