Youths distribute welfare packs to cleaners at 33 hawker centres

Submitted by Stomper Anonymous

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A group of youths started an initiative to give out welfare packs to cleaners in hawker centres across the island last Saturday (Feb 22).

Stomper Anonymous was heartened by their kindness and shared the Project Merci initiative with Stomp.

"I was at Marsiling Mall Hawker Centre on Saturday when I saw a group of youths distributing welfare packs to the cleaners in the hawker centre," she said.

"I approached them to find out more about their activity and based on what I understand, they are a group of 70 youths who volunteered under Project Merci that is a fully self-initiated project without any charity or supporting organisation.

"They had packed about 750 welfare packs of which 70 were distributed to the Ministry of Health's contact tracing team and 680 were given to cleaners island-wide.

"I also understand they decided to appreciate the cleaners as they feel the cleaners have played a vital role in fighting the spread of the coronavirus, or Covid-19.

"Cleaners are often in contact with human respiratory fluids when they come in contact with our human waste, be is clearing trash or cleaning our dishes and tables at hawker centres."

The Stomper added that she felt the initiative was a unique one.

"They bring the message across to Singaporeans that much more can be done through their small initiative, as long as the strengths of the individual are tapped on one another, regardless of age.

"Indeed they are such an inspiration to Singaporeans like us!"

According to Youth.sg, the Project Merci initiative was started by 20-year-old Evander Goh and a group of volunteers who fell cleaners in hawker centres should be treated as frontline heroes too.

The youths visited 33 different hawker centres where they distributed over 700 welfare packs.

The packs included biscuits, Milo and Ribena drinks, a Red Bull can, as well as a bag of Nestle's 3-in-1 coffee mix.

The items were sponsored by various donors and took two hours to pack into welfare packs.

Evander and Project Merci plan to expand their project by doing a second phase in two weeks' time, where they will not only reach out to cleaners but service staff in the public transport sector too.