200 residents in Choa Chu Kang to get cards with S$50 credits to use at Food Bank vending machine

Food from a metal box.

Sumita Thiagarajan | December 18, 2020, 02:20 PM

South West Community Development Council launched a Food Bank Vending Machine at Choa Chu Kang on Dec. 12.

Present at the launch last Saturday were the Mayor of South West district, Low Yen Ling, and Member of Parliament at Chua Chu Kang GRC, Don Wee.

Located at 813A Choa Chu Kang Avenue 7, the vending machine was introduced to provide free food to less fortunate residents.

At the same time, the vending machine also provides residents with bento meals which can be heated up in a microwave that is provided.

This can be especially useful for senior citizens who have mobility issues.

Monthly credit of S$50 provided to each vulnerable resident

Each month, 200 vulnerable residents will be given cards contained S$50 worth of credits that they can use at the machine.

By tapping their card on the machine, these residents will be able to get some groceries, such as canned food and rice.

At the same time, they can get microwavable meals from the machine.

39-year-old Roziana Bte Ramli shared that the initiative means that she can save time and money instead of heading out to buy food.

She also added:

"There are many choices available and it is also easy for me to heat up the meals in the microwave provided.”

Initiative will run until Dec. 31, 2021

The initiative will run until Dec. 31, 2021.

The project is supported by the following partners:

  • The Food Bank Singapore
  • Fei Yue Family Service Centre @ Chua Chu Kang
  • Mendaki @ Choa Chu Kang
  • Keat Hong Axis Colours RC
  • Brickland Citizens Consultative Committee (CCC)
  • Community Development & Welfare Fund

Wee, who is the Adviser to Brickland Grassroots Organisations said:

“It is important to care for the vulnerable in our community to ensure their basic needs are taken care of.

This is why we worked with The Food Bank Singapore to bring in the vending machine to allow vulnerable residents and elderly with mobility issues to have access to a wide variety of food items and hot meals while helping them to defray the costs.”

Low thanked community partners and individuals for coming together to care for the vulnerable group amid Covid-19.

Food insecurity in S'pore

Even though Singapore is considered a food paradise, with cheap food options, around 4.1 per cent of Singaporeans faced moderate to severe food insecurity between 2016 and 2018, reported CNA.

A local study by Singapore Management University found that around one in five of the participants they surveyed were facing severe food insecurity, which means that they are unsure when their next meal will be, having to skip meals, or even going a whole day without food, according to CNA.

In some cases, those who face food insecurity are unable to get sufficient, and nutritious food, either due to physical or financial barriers.

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Top images via South West Community Development Council (CDC)