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Food from the Heart launches Phase 2 of app-driven charity meal redemption programme, with plans to scale it island-wide to benefit more

23 August 2020, Sunday

Food from the Heart Official Media Release

Food from the Heart (FFTH), a charity that feeds the needy in Singapore, today launched Phase 2 of its cooked food programme, Project Belanja! (热食暖心齐 买单) at Mountbatten SMC. The app-driven programme will provide needy with freshly-cooked hot meals to be redeemed at designated neighbouring hawker stalls, within proximity of the activity zones of the beneficiaries.

This is an FFTH initiative in partnership with local grassroots organisations and hawkers, Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech) and South East Community Development Council, to facilitate the redemption of meals, through the use of FFTH QR-coded beneficiary card. Stallholders will use the SupplyAlly mobile app, developed by GovTech, to scan the beneficiary’s card. The programme will allow 104 needy residents to redeem hot meals from more than 20 hawker stalls.

Ms Sim Bee Hia, CEO Food from the Heart said, “During Covid-19, Project Belanja! stood the test of all logistical challenges that stemmed from stringent safe-distancing measures. Beneficiaries of the three centres under Phase 1 of the programme were able to redeem their meals without any disruptions. We have thus accelerated our digital transformation journey. Data collected from the pilot centre was analysed to chart salient features of Phase 2."

“The programme at Mountbatten SMC allows beneficiaries to choose from more designated food stalls in their neighbourhoods, redeeming up to 15 hot meals a month. It also allows them to decide when they would like to redeem their meals. We are thankful for the efforts from GovTech, local partners and stallholders to scale the programme more efficiently through digitization to give better to more beneficiaries,” Ms Sim added.

Mountbatten Community Development and Welfare Fund (CDWF) Management Committee and Marwari Mitra Mandal (Singapore) will fund the project together with a matching grant from South East Community Development Council, totaling $75,000.

Mr Lim Biow Chuan, MP for Mountbatten SMC launched the programme at Block 34 Cassia Cresent where four stalls from the coffeeshop and a café are participating. Mr Lim said, “Project Belanja! addresses the needs of beneficiaries who are unable to cook or have no time to cook. We were running a meal coupon scheme and it was laborious and tedious. With a professional food charity, Food from the Heart, managing the scheme, grassroots leaders can focus on engaging beneficiaries. I am much heartened by the efforts of our stallholders to embrace technology to participate in this project to feed our community in need."

Mr Roy Chew, General Manager of South East CDC, shared, “South East CDC is very happy to support this bottom-up initiative project by our community partner, Food from the Heart and 2 of 2 Mountbatten grassroots organisations. Social isolation among vulnerable elderly has always been a concern, especially so in the current circumstance. I am happy that this project not just look at the basic needs, but also help the community at large for such a social issue. I look forward to working with more ground partners to support such meaningful programmes in time to come.

In DPM Heng Swee Keat’s Fortitude Budget Speech, the year-old Project Belanja! was highlighted as a “creative idea” that “supports our hawkers and allows beneficiaries to get freshly cooked food, while our social service agencies save costs and reduce food wastage.”

#foodfromtheheart #projectbelanja #givingbetter

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