KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 14 — The ECM Libra Foundation has set aside RM3 million for its Covid-19 Food Aid Programme to feed urban poor around Kuala Lumpur, an initiative which was started in July.
The initiative is aimed at providing food and other necessary aid to overcome the difficulties impacting marginalised and vulnerable communities in Malaysia during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The ECM Libra Foundation has set aside RM3 million to fund this programme for six to nine months, and the first two rounds of food (July and August) have been collected and distributed to 1,427 families and 640 urban poor, including single mothers and vulnerable individuals, by selected NGOs throughout the country,” the foundation’s chairman Datuk Seri Kalimullah Masheerul Hassan said.
He said that since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak, the foundation has provided food aid for the Orang Asli community members in Bandar Sri Muadzzam Shah, ventilators and personal protective equipments (PPEs), as well as face masks and shields for hospitals and frontliners.
Additionally, Kalimullah said that 27,000 packs of food for old folks homes, orphans and single mothers in and around Seremban during the movement control order (MCO) and 4,500 nights of hotel stays for medical frontliners from the Kuala Lumpur Hospital and the National Heart Institute were also provided, at the Tune Hotel PWTC.
Today, Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, together with Kalimullah, Pertiwi Soup Kitchen founder Datuk Munirah Hamid, Air Asia’s Tan Sri Tony Fernandes, Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad’s chief executive and executive director Tan Sri Lee Oi Hian, and YTL Power International Berhad’s managing director Datuk Yeoh Seok Hong distributed cooked meals to poor families around the Chow Kit area here, which has a large concentration of homeless people.
The meals were cooked and packed by Momo’s KL, a hotel under the Ormond Group.
Kalimullah said that the food aid programme needs between RM3 million and RM3.5 million to feed 1,427 families and 640 urban poor, which includes single mothers and vulnerable individuals for between six and 12 months, until the economy picks up.
“The programme has a finite life of a maximum of 12 months,” he added.
The foundation also sponsors the Chow Kit Food Aid programme.
Munirah meanwhile said that her organization, which has been operating for 53 years, helped rural poor before and is now focusing on the urban poor.
“Helping the urban poor is a lot harder. We are dealing with a different mindset. These are people who have fallen through the cracks, as the country progressed. This is probably the fifth generation and it is so much harder to change the attitude and the lifestyle.
“What we worry about are the children who are not going to school. They drop out of school early. So through feeding, we make sure they are at least getting proper nutrition, and we get closer to them, to understand what are their real problems, so that we can slowly pitch to government agencies as to the proper solutions that are needed,” she told reporters.