The shortage of medical supplies — such as surgical masks, hand sanitiers, disinfectants and protective gear — as well as food in supermarkets have taken a toll on the underprivileged and Ministry of Health (MOH) staff nationwide. Many communities that rely on social enterprises and NGOs for aid, especially the homeless and marginalised, have been rendered helpless. As a result, a number of initiatives and organisations have stepped up to support those affected.
However, during these uncertain times, many organisations themselves will face financial disruptions due to postponed or cancelled fundraising events. This may lead to loss of funding that community-based organisations depend on. So lend a hand to them by donating what you can, be it food or even monetary aid. Here are ten to get you started.
Fashion Valet x IMARET Malaysia
Fashion Valet founders Vivy Yusof and husband Fadzarudin Anuar have initiated the FV Covid19 Support Fund with the Islamic Medical Association of Malaysia Response and Relief Team (IMARET Malaysia) to raise funds for the Malaysian healthcare system via SimplyGiving. The funds collected will be used to provide medical and food supplies as well as electronics to aid frontliners in their effort to stave off the virus. The couple have also personally donated RM100,000 to get the ball rolling for the fundraiser.
Donate via SimplyGiving here.
The funds from the Covid-19 Pandemic Fund by Mercy Malaysia will be channelled towards supporting medical services and marginalised groups with virus protection necessities. As healthcare is included in the list of essential services under the government’s MCO, MERCY Malaysia’s clinic for refugees and migrants will continue to operate during the restricted movement period. The organisation is also working alongside a consortium of NGOs to assist the Ministry of Health to secure medical volunteers to be stationed at temperature screening points.
Kesatuan Pekerja Swasta Hospital Kerajaan (Hospital Cleaner's Union)
Doctors and nurses are not the only ones risking their health. Hospital cleaners play an equally important role in the healthcare system to ensure medical sites do not become breeding grounds for viruses. Kesatuan Pekerja Swasta Hospital Kerajaan is collecting donations to purchase necessities and masks to protect hospital cleaners who are working tirelessly to sanitise and clean hospital premises. The union also fights for hospital cleaners’ rights, especially those who work strenuous hours and receive low salaries.
Donate via bank transfer to KPSPSHKSM, RHB Bank, 2-08061-00057762. Learn more here.
Priyaa Simmi x Kitafund
Mrs Malaysia World 2019/2020 Priyaa Simmi and Kitafund have launched a Covid-19 aid fund to help underprivileged families. Partnering NGOs will use the funds to purchase supplies from supermarkets and distribute to 500 families across Malaysia whose livelihood have been severely affected by the pandemic. Each family will receive provisions worth RM100, which includes rice, cooking oil, flour, salt, sugar and other essential items for daily usage.
Contribute any amount you can here.
The Lost Food Project
Since 2016, The Lost Food Project has been rescuing nutritious and surplus food that would otherwise end up in landfills and redistributing it to Malaysia’s most vulnerable community. Every week, the food bank provides 56 charities with food and they, in turn, feed more than 6,000 people. Their charity partners are often small or consist of independently-run care homes with no steady flow of funds. With the current situation, many of these charities will need even more financial and food aid.
Donate via bank transfer to The Lost Food Project, Maybank, 5148 9706 8927 or SimplyGiving here.
Pit Stop Community Café
A social enterprise that tackles urban issues such as homelessness and urban poverty, Pit Stop is still providing food to the homeless, or better known as street clients among the community members, during the MCO. However, because only takeaways are allowed during this period, the use of more containers caused a significant rise in financial costs. Founders Andrea Tan and Jocelyn Lee have been offering food and even culinary training in the kitchen to the underprivileged to equip them with skills — they’re now asking members of the public for help, be it bottled water, funds and even sanitisers to aid those in need.
You can deliver your contributions to The Pit Stop Community Café, 101 Jalan Tun HS Lee, KL. Delivery hours, except Sun & Tues noon-4.30pm. Otherwise, reach them via Facebook.
Buku Jalanan Chow Kit
Known as a platform to provide education opportunities and home-schooling for displaced children, the NGO has been trying to raise funds to feed more than 50 families in Chow Kit. Most parents living in the area are casual workers who earn less than RM30 per day, and they would need food donations and basic necessities such as rice, packed noodles, flour, oil and any kind of tinned food for their family. Volunteers will be on standby to repackage these donations into smaller portions to be distributed.
Deliver your goods to 54A, Lorong Haji Taib 1, Jalan Sri Amar, KL. 012 463 8088. See here for more info.
Project Wawasan Rakyat (POWR)
Medical frontliners are working relentlessly to aid Covid-19 patients — it’s only right if the safety of their family members are ensured too. To keep the children of MOH staff in safe hands during the MCO, POWR is raising funds to support at least 50% of their childcare costs. The project has partnered reputable professional childcare agency KiddoCare, which offers a reduced rate for MOH frontliners.
Donation details can be found here.
Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO)
Lending mental support is just as important as ensuring one’s physical well-being and safety during these trying times. WAO’s services for domestic violence survivors, which includes case consultations via phone or WhatsApp, have been made available online until the end of MCO. WAO has urged neighbours and members of the public to be extra vigilant.
Call WAO’s hotline at 03 7956 3488 (Mon-Sat, 9am-5pm) or WhatsApp Tina at 018 988 8058 (24 hours). See here for more info.
WeCare Allied Health Centre
Pandemics can disrupt our personal and professional lives, especially when we’re required to practise social distancing and self-isolation. To make things worse, the constant barrage of misinformation on social media may lead to unnecessary mass hysteria. If you find yourself unable to cope with stress during the current Covid-19 outbreak, WeCare is offering e-therapy until the end of March to alleviate your worries and mental woes.
Make an appointment via 013 518 8285 or 013 815 8285. See here for more info.
You can support more initiatives at #KitaJagaKita, a movement initiated by Malaysia author Hanna Alkaf to gather organisations and individuals to assist those badly affected by the movement control order. Email the team at [email protected]