A lorry pulled up outside our free meals station on Friday evening, 27 December 2013. It had some eye-catching cargo, loaded as it was with colourful bags. What’s going on?
The bags were soon unloaded and distributed to workers registered with TWC2’s Cuff Road Project. Turns out that the generous donors were a group of friends led by Michelle Ngern and her boyfriend Daniel. “We wanted to do something for the workers,” said Michelle, “and we got in touch with SVDP.” The initials stand for the St Vincent de Paul Society, associated with St Ignatius Church. SVDP Society and the church have been a regular supporters of TWC2 over the years and have done much for workers.
Sudikar was one of the recipients. “I very happy,” he says. “Singapore people very good, they know we worker have many problem.”
Alam chips in: “Now I no work, money no have. This lady give all this good things, all can use. I thank-you her very much. ”
Indeed, the bags’ contents were very well thought out. Not only were they generous, everything there will prove useful to the jobless workers we serve — testimony to the deep understanding that the donors and SVDP have of workers’ situation.
Amazingly, the same evening, there was more goodwill to come. About an hour later, another set of donations were being given out. Gifts by father-and-son team Raymond and Benjamin Han (in pic below), they were conveniently packed in resealable plastic bags. The Hans are from Social Concerns and Outreach ministry of the Toa Payoh Chinese Methodist Church. As Benjamin described in his first email to us:
Our church has an annual food ration event where we partner the Boys’ Brigade to distribute groceries to low-income families in Toa Payoh. This year, we would like to expand this project by collecting food rations and daily toiletries (e.g. soap, toothbrushes etc) for needy foreign workers as well.
Being daily essentials, these items are always welcome.
Not only is hygiene is essential component of good health and wellness, to be clean and groomed gives a man a sense of dignity. And surely all of us who are human, whether poor, old or unschooled, have a right to dignity.
On behalf of the men, thanks once again to Michelle, Raymond, Daniel, Ben, and all at St Vincent De Paul, St Ignatius Church and the Social Concerns and Outreach ministry/Toa Payoh Chinese Methodist Church.