#Benderaputih: Where Do You Get Help and What Do You Donate to Food Banks?
Updated: Sep 30, 2021
We all know many Malaysians have been hit hard by the Covid-19 Pandemic. From losing jobs to inaccessible online classes and the passing of loved ones. The indefinite MCO extension sparked the rise of the uplifting #benderaputih or #whiteflag movement. Started by a group of youth in Kuantan, who lost a close friend due to severe financial difficulties, it has become a symbol of national hope for many more. Here at TGS, as youth ourselves, we also wanted to spread awareness of this wonderful initiative. So keep reading to find out where to look for help or how YOU can give back!
Where Do You Find Food Banks?
With so many Food banks popping up it's hard to keep track of everything. So we compiled some community founded Bendera Putih Apps, Maps and Sites to show the ones nearest to you and some of them also highlight people in need so you can deliver groceries or food directly. Here are a few listed below.
Malaysian student volunteers Sidharrth Nagappan, Cornelius Pang, and Shaun Mak launched the App and website, previously known as Bendera Putih. Using it, you can ask for help, report a SOS or find nearby food banks.
To help their fellow Malaysians, the team at Terato Tech has created a map where you can pin your white flag to ask for help or pin nearby food banks. One of their useful features is the direct WhatsApp call function to reach people immediately!
Also founded by a group of Youth, Feed Selangor is a site to find Food Banks near you in Selangor & KL. Going the extra mile, they also provide resources about mental wellbeing support and organizations feeding Selangor.
Started by the Rakyat for the Rakyat, Ma-Kasih connects those who need help with those who can help. A handy feature is their dietary requirements options for Halal or Vegetarian!
Similar to Kita Jaga Malaysia except it's available in BM, English and Mandarin. While also neatly categorising the needs for the requests for help.
Twitter user @penangstrays was one of the first people to create a map of food banks available throughout Malaysia.
What Can You Donate?
For those who are plant-based, BMS Organics in collaboration with Muhibbah Food Bank Malaysia gives away free Vegetarian Bentos. It's available Tuesday to Saturday at their Bandar Puchong Utama branch, after 12PM. You can help out this initiative by purchasing a Giveaway Bento at RM 8.80 here. It's healthy for your body and also warms your heart by doing a good deed for others. Speak about killing two birds with one stone!
Tips Before You Donate:
Choose non-perishable foods to keep the food edible for the longest time.
Donate personal care items like face masks, sanitizers, shampoo and soap when possible.
Ask the food banks beforehand on which items they are running low on.
Support local marts when buying goods to donate.
Always follow SOPs!
During hard times, every Malaysian has a role to play. Be aware of the community around you, see if any of your neighbours are in need of help, donate to your local food banks and share this post with others who may need it!
Written by Ravika Ravichandran.