It’s a Blessing to Bless Others

When Jane Tan, Executive Assistant from Standard Chartered Singapore, found out about the food packing exercise with Food from the Heart from the staff intranet last year, she jumped at the chance.

They say volunteering can be an addiction. Till date, she has participated in 7 sessions, including during the Giving Week season.

Nobody should be deprived of nutritious meals

Food from the Heart reaches out to less-privileged individuals and families through programmes like food distribution, toy distribution and birthday celebrations. Some of them are unable to work due to illness or injury, while some come from low-income background with just one breadwinner in the big family.

“The recipients mainly stay in rented flats, and people who are sick and cannot work, big low-income families with just one breadwinner, or individuals who are suffering from illness or injury and have no financial support network. Nobody should be deprived of nutritious, healing meals. Besides supplying them with food, FFTH also aims to create awareness about food wastage and the virtue of sharing among volunteers. I wanted to be part of this charity that has been doing great things for the past 15 years,” Jane said. 

Better together

Checking food expiry, packing the donated food items into bags and carefully placing them on pallets for wrapping are some tasks performed by the volunteers at each session. The bags are then delivered to island-wide distribution centres to the community partner.

Jane met many kind-hearted people from all walks of life who came together with one heart, one mind and passion for one cause: To send heart-warming wishes to the needy families.

They challenged themselves to pack for as many beneficiaries as they could. Sometimes, even going beyond the volunteering hours.

“At the end of the packing, we gave each other a clap for the good job done and asked if any of us would be there at the next packing. Such is the spirit!” Jane enthused.

Volunteering a win-win for all

Besides helping the community in need, volunteering also gives Jane a new perspective on food which many have been taking for granted.

“We hear some of us asking “what to have for lunch” or lament “there is nothing to eat” at meal times. On the other hand, there are families struggling to put food on the table. Some children even go to school hungry, not by choice. Now, I am counting my blessings rather than complaining,” she shared.

Holding a full-time job means having limited time to give back to the community. This is where the three days of employee volunteering leave offered by Standard Chartered annually comes in handy for Jane.

“I am thankful of the volunteering leave given by the Bank, though sometimes I would also offset it from my annual leave. It is a blessing to bless others. Blessed are those who give whether cash, time or hard work. I enjoy doing good things and I have chosen to make a difference,” she concluded.