Sanitation workers play an important role in keeping a city clean and free of rubbish. Yet, they are not often given due appreciation.
Such was the message Persatuan Penyayang dan Kesaksamaan Kuala Lumpur (PPKKL) wanted to convey when they donated packs of dried foodstuff and teh tarik to 25 workers from Alam Flora at its Kampung Baru office.
“We have chosen to do charity work with sanitation workers this time as we feel they have been overlooked, ” said PPKKL president Idris Moktar.
He said that without sanitation workers, the environment would be “unliveable” and stressed that they were as important as medical frontliners in the battle against Covid-19.
“If sanitation workers do not do their job, rubbish will accumulate and with it, the risk of bacterial infections and other diseases.
“They are also putting their own health at risk every time they go on duty, having to handle personal items like discarded bandages and face masks, ” said Idris, a former political aide.
Stressing that the Alam Flora workers who received food packs from PPKKL were being well cared for by their employer, Idris said the items were worth about RM40 and came from benefactors comprising housing developers, large companies and individuals.
The packets of teh tarik were from a nasi kandar chain outlet.
Founded early this year, PPKKL plans to equip general sanitation workers with life skills so that they are able to sustain themselves after retirement.
“Many of them, who fall in the B40 group, would have exhausted their EPF savings on house loans and other commitments after retirement.
“Some end up having to depend on welfare, ” said Idris.
To ensure they can remain productive, PPKKL is planning to offer courses based on individual talent.
“Our aim is to do charity, not just by giving but through education, ” he said.
In the past, PPKKL’s outreach efforts saw them hiring a first aid trainer to conduct free classes at PPR Sri Penara.
One resident’s feedback was though she was not in the medical line, it would still be useful to know what to do if her grandchild was choking.
In addition to donations for the sick and needy and organising outings for children from welfare homes, it has also held expressive art and plant therapy sessions for patients in a government hospital.
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