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Temasek Foundation pledges 300,000 free meals for needy stricken by Covid-19

SINGAPORE — Temasek Foundation will help to provide 300,000 meals to around 2,750 persons in need who have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, it said in a statement on Wednesday (April 29). The cost of these meals comes to around S$780,000.

Temasek Foundation and its partners are reaching out to give free meals to the vulnerable and disadvantaged segments of the community who are hard hit by Covid-19.

Temasek Foundation and its partners are reaching out to give free meals to the vulnerable and disadvantaged segments of the community who are hard hit by Covid-19.

Singapore

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SINGAPORE — Temasek Foundation will help to provide 300,000 meals to around 2,750 persons in need who have been affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, it said in a statement on Wednesday (April 29). The cost of these meals comes to around S$780,000.

The philanthropic arm of state investment firm Temasek Holdings, the foundation noted that members of the community have rallied to support those whose lives have been disrupted by the health and economic crisis and are facing trying times.

“Standing in solidarity with Singaporeans, Temasek Foundation and its partners seek to support affected families with timely food security and relief,” it said.

Partnering with food charities and schools, it aims to provide the meals through a trio of support programmes that help groups such as the elderly, needy families, students from specialised schools and hawkers.

Two of these programmes are already underway. Temasek Foundation said that it has been partnering with food charities Free Food For All and Willing Hearts since April 20 to deliver 270,000 free meals to up to 1,500 people for a period of six months.

Its main target through this initiative is to feed low-income individuals, the elderly living alone in rental flats and those with pre-existing medical conditions that make them immobile. 

Mr Nizar Mohamed Shariff, founder of Free Food For All, highlighted the importance of providing these groups with “a defence against food insecurity”.

“We believe that the community has to come together to ensure that hunger is not present in our households, because a hunger-free society is a strong community,” he said.

Another of Temasek Foundation’s ongoing meal support programmes helps up to 750 students from Metta School and four special education schools, namely Assumption Pathway School, Crest Secondary School, Northlight School and Spectra Secondary School.

These schools are still open during the circuit breaker from April 8 to June 1 while most other schools have converted to full home-based learning. 

Since April 13, Temasek Foundation has started supporting the disbursement of around 30,000 meal vouchers, meal rations or pre-packaged meals to students at special education schools for the two months.

On the students identified for the programme by Spectra Secondary School, Mr Tan Moon Chong, chairman of the school’s Parent Support Group, said that some of them often go to school without having had a meal. 

“Providing them with a meal and a snack will allow them to fill their stomachs and fill their minds as well as they focus better on their studies,” he said.

Mr Seet Tiat Hee, principal of Crest Secondary School, said that his students had asked for food such as bread and fruit, as well as biscuits and cereals.

“With their basic requests followed through, we witnessed many smiles among our students who experienced personally the culture of care during this difficult time,” he said.

Temasek Foundation also said that it is working with The Food Bank Singapore, a charity, to buy and deliver 7,000 free hawker meals to up to 500 needy individuals and families who are not already receiving food aid from other agencies.

Some of these meals will be delivered by unemployed or low-income workers and they will get a small fee for the work, so as to supplement their loss of income this period.

Ms Nichol Ng, co-founder of The Food Bank Singapore, said that the hawker food delivery programme was meant to assist hawkers who have seen their sales plummet in recent weeks.

Mr Richard Magnus, chairman of the Temasek Foundation Cares programme, said that these meal support programmes were part of a “concerted effort” to provide food aid to those in need.

“The vulnerable and disadvantaged segments of our community are hard hit by Covid-19, especially for their meals. Temasek Foundation and its partners have not forgotten them,” he said.

Last month, Temasek Foundation worked with the People’s Association to distribute 500ml of free hand sanitisers to all Singapore households at various community centres and malls islandwide.

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Temasek Covid-19 coronavirus food meals Temasek Foundation

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