Making nutritious food accessible to poor families


(From second left) Margma president Dr Supramaniam Shanmugam, Kamarudin and Low giving a food basket to a family representative from Seri Kota public housing in Kuala Lumpur.

SOME 500 families in Bandar Tun Razak, Kuala Lumpur, will be receiving weekly provisions of fresh, nutritious food through Think City’s Bakul K2K platform, thanks to a RM500,000 allocation from Margma Foundation.

The foundation, which runs corporate social responsibility programmes for Malaysian Rubber Glove Manufacturers Association (Margma), initiated a “Healthy Food, Better Learning” campaign after receiving numerous reports on poor health and nutrition among public housing communities.

Think City, an urban impact organisation dedicated to making cities more liveable, resilient and sustainable, launched the Bakul K2K platform which retails fresh food baskets to selected low-income housing communities in Kuala Lumpur and Selangor at low and affordable prices.

To kick-start Bakul K2K, Margma and Think City organised a community programme called K2K Basket Introduction Day which was launched by Bandar Tun Razak MP Datuk Kamarudin Jaffar.

It was attended by 50 families who received the food baskets.

Activities at the event included a community engagement by Teach for Malaysia to raise awareness of their educational prorgamme for children who needed additional tutoring.

In his speech, Kamarudin thanked Margma Foundation, Think City and residents associations for bringing the initiative to the heart of the city.

“Recognising the challenges faced by the B40 community in my parliamentary area, I am hopeful that initiatives like these will increase residents’ resilience and fortitude, which they have already shown in weathering the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I urge various agencies and stakeholders to work together to ensure that the B40 community is not left further behind, especially at the expense of future generations who have the potential to lift the community out of poverty,” he said.

The food baskets distributed contained a whole chicken and a selection of fresh vegetables to encourage a balanced food intake to help alleviate poor health and nutrition.

The programme offers weekly provisions for at least 500 families with children aged seven to 19 years, residing in Seri Kota, Seri Sabah 3B and Seri Melaka public housing schemes in Bandar Tun Razak.

It also provides lessons on nutrition and cooking classes to the community.

Addressing the recipients and audience at the launch event, Margma Foundation chairman Denis Low Jau Foo outlined the importance of access to healthy food for families.

“This is especially true for those with children who need a balanced diet and optimum nutrition for their physical and mental development, as well as to advance further in their education.

“We believe the welfare and well-being of all humanity starts with the ability to share.

“It is wise to assume that a healthy body makes a healthy mind, hence this mission of providing sufficient nutritious food to students in this community,” he said.

According to Low, Margma Foundation anticipates spending RM1mil annually to improve the well-being of students by providing nutritious food, school accessories and some pocket money to deserving students.

Think City managing director Hamdan Abdul Majeed highlighted that low-income communities, specifically those residing in public housing, faced many challenges that had been heightened by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Existing challenges in poor nutritional health, mental health and access to home education for schoolgoing children, among others, have been further exacerbated by increases in the cost of living. “There is a need to revitalise public housing and ensure that these communities can build their capacity to navigate and survive these challenging times,” said Hamdan.

Think City’s Bakul K2K initiative offers public housing residents the opportunity to access fresh and affordable food, delivered to their flats after the purchases are made via the Bakul K2K website.

To redeem their baskets, residents from selected public housing are required to register at the Bakul K2K website with a voucher sponsored by Margma Foundation.

The baskets are then delivered directly to the public housing complex weekly.

Initially piloted at Hicom Public Housing Project in Shah Alam, Selangor, the Bakul K2K initiative is now expanding to public housing projects in Bandar Tun Razak.

For details on Bakul K2K, visit www.myk2k.com.my

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