Mr CP Eruandee Prayitna’s eyes light up at the mention of his family.
A dad of three, Eruandee (43), better known as ‘Wan’, is Deputy Head of Engagement and Outreach at Centre for Fathering–Dads for Life (CFF-DFL). His work is to encourage active fathering in Singapore’s Malay-Muslim community.
His wife, Kindergarten Teacher, Nooraini Bte Md Arif (42) adores gardening so much that their only daughter (12) was named “Sarah Rose”. Their boys are Shah Ryan (16) and Roy Sharil (13).
Partners in life
Nooraini is Wan’s partner in life –the one who has been through thick and thin with him. “She was my shoulder to cry on when things got tough in the early days that I was setting up my business.”
When the business stabilised, he started volunteering with DFL. She was supportive of that too.
“I appreciate her because she loves me…When I need to talk to someone, I will talk to her.”
“We just like spending time together, what we do does not really matter. It could be sharing a meal at MacDonalds or driving somewhere together in the car… At times, we will just hold hands and take a walk together. You’ve got to appreciate the quiet moments as much as the others.”
“We… go for walks at the harbour near our home, sit down for a drink, and just talk about our day… She’ll talk about her stress at work… (and) I’ll tell her how my day went or what I am planning.”
“There are a lot of things that I appreciate about her, but I do not know how to say it in one or two lines. Without her, I definitely won’t be who I am today.”
Best friends in life.
Weekending with the family
“The best part of weekend outings is waking each other up, brushing our teeth, and getting ready to leave the house. It’s filled with anticipation.”
Jumping into the car, they have fun bickering about where to go and what to eat, teasing and bantering before deciding on a destination.
Spending time together is important to Wan. “I remind my children not to take it for granted. We may not be able to do this as often when Ryan starts his National Service in a few years.”
They talk about anything under the sun
Wan is always on a lookout for interesting conversation topics. He tells stories that help his children grasp life’s lessons and values. And, his children are ever ready to ask questions in return.
“Anything can get me started on a story. One day, we drove past a man who was sweeping on the street. I got them to think about what he was doing.”
“I explained that he was a diligent man who, perhaps, was working hard to provide for his family.”
An Astronomy enthusiast, Wan also tries to share his knowledge with his children too. Recently, he talked to them about the sun and its properties.
The unceasing flow of ideas and conversations, and sharing of their lives, has built robust relationships in this family of five.
Unassumingly, Wan describes these activities as “average” and “normal” –and nothing extraordinary to shout about.
However, the fact is, every little action does add up and contributes to the depth with which they relate and communicate.
Onboard CFF-DFL together
After volunteering with CFF-DFL for a few months in 2015, Wan came onboard as staff in February 2016. Witnessing father-child relationships strengthened and restored through the Centre’s programmes, he wanted to bring them into his community.
He is reaching families today, with Nooraini by his side, and with his children inspiring him to dream up new programmes.
Recently, he went on stage to perform with Sarah Rose at the Jamming with Dad event that drew 10 father-child pairs and over 400 spectators.
Beaming, Wan says, “You could see the children hugging their dads and laughing with them. It was just wonderful.”
“I believe in the DFL movement. I believe in the value of a good father and child relationship. One of the happiest things about what I do is to see the bond between fathers and children develop through our events and equipping classes.” Wan