The work of TRANS first took root in the 1970s in Bedok where there were concerns about social problems and youth issues. A small group of volunteers organised informal activities to engage youths at risk. This led to the Bedok Outreach Project (aka Project Khidmat Belia in Malay) in 1979. The project was entirely volunteer-driven. The volunteers, imbued with passion, worked hard to reach out to youths on the fringe. Various activities such as street camps, mass games and tuition were organised. As activities increased, a space of 45 square metres (the size of a 2-room rental flat) at the void deck of Blk 13, Bedok South was rented to serve the purpose.
In 1986, professional social workers were first employed. In the following year, the team tried to register the organisation as a society under the name of ‘Temasek Centre’ but was unsuccessful. However, the application was approved when the name was changed to TRANS Centre. TRANS was the acronym for Temasek Reachout And Neighbourhood Service Centre and was lovingly called TC by the youths, staff and volunteers. TC soon expanded its space from a 2-room flat to a bigger unit at the void deck. Under TC, youths found purpose through their participation in soccer, basketball and other activities. The Centre also started socio-educational programmes to support children from vulnerable families.