JOHOR BARU: With the price of basic goods surging of late, charity non-governmental organisations (NGOs) here are hoping that the public would donate to them in kind instead of in cash.
They said that donations in cash are limited these days as they could no longer buy the same amount of food for their recipients with the money.
Yayasan Suria Johor Baru founder and secretary James Ho said that the increasing cost of living has affected the operations of NGOs significantly, prompting them to look for other ways to continue supporting those in need.
“We can no longer depend on donations in cash as the prices of goods have skyrocketed. We prefer getting the items directly as this could help us cut cost while allowing us to still help the same number of people.
“I have informed my regular donors to give us donations in kind instead of in cash as that would be more helpful for us,” he said in an interview.
Ho said he also had to reduce the monthly cash aid he gives to families in need due to the significant drop in donations since April.
“Apart from giving basic goods, we are also supporting some families where we give them monthly cash aid. However, due to a drop of about 50% in cash donations since April, we have no choice but to also cut down the amount we give out.
“We cut off the cash aid on a case-to-case basis depending on the situation of the family. We try to cut as little as possible for those who are in dire need,” he added.
Free Market Johor coordinator Zaharah Raishan Mohd Yassin said that NGOs would need to look for creative solutions in order to continue helping those who depend on them.
“We have to look for ways to continue operating since many people are dependent on us. I have told those who want to help out to give us donations in kind for certain items such as cooking oil, flour and sugar.
“Previously, during our free market programmes where we give out basic necessities to the underprivileged for free, we will give people whole chickens and one full tray of eggs with about 35 eggs each.
“Now, we divide the chicken while the eggs are divided into smaller packets with only about 10 each.
“These are some of the adjustments we have had to make in order to still support the people,” she added.
Insane Kasih (I-Kasih) head Zuraini Tahir said that donations in kind would help NGOs assist their target groups.
“It will be so much better if they can donate goods to us directly. If they give us money, we will have no choice but to cut down a huge portion of the food basket we give the people.
“This is a very difficult time for many people and we are trying as much as we can to make sure we can still continue doing what we do.
“In order to do that, we hope that the public will come forward to assist us,” he said, adding that public support has been decreasing over the past few months.