Citizens Journal
Wed Mar 20 2024

Ending Hunger, Nourishing Hope: Food Bank with a Heart

Poverty Alleviation
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Originally published on Citizen’s Journal Published: March 13, 2024

In an imperfect world where some still endure hunger, the Food Aid Foundation (FAF), a non-profit organisation, has stepped up to provide hope for the underprivileged.

Founded by Rick Chee over a decade ago primarily to serve communities on the outskirts of the Klang Valley in 2013, the organisation has since expanded its reach to Melaka, Kelantan, and Sabah, with plans to establish a branch in Sarawak. In Penang, FAF will partner with the Mutiara Food Bank.

“FAF was established to tackle hunger and food security challenges among the underprivileged,” explained Izzul Nordin, the CSR and Programme Manager of FAF. In addition to collecting and distributing food, we actively advocate for and educate the public on reducing food wastage.”


“Repurposing food waste is a delicious way to contribute to feeding the world and safeguarding the planet” - Rick Chee, the Founder of Food Aid Foundation.

The Food Aid Foundation operates as a food bank in Malaysia, accepting donations of unused or untouched food from manufacturers, distributors, wholesalers, retailers, companies, and individuals. These donations are distributed to charitable homes, volunteer welfare organisations, low-income families, people in need, and soup kitchens. “For the past two years, we have been supplying an average of RM2.05 million worth of food monthly across Malaysia,” said Izzul.

“At present, we are running two ongoing programmes and one upcoming initiative—the UOB Heartbeat programme, a free dinner programme sponsored by Public Bank Islamic, and the Maybank Heart programme,” he said.


Elaborating further, Izzul explained that the UOB Heartbeat programme focuses on delivering talks on digital skills and providing food rations to selected orphanages from February to July. “As part of this programme, we distribute free desktop computers to selected orphanages.

“Public Bank Islamic currently offers free dinners at Pusat Transit Gelandangan (a transit centre for the homeless). Regarding the Maybank Heart programme, we will be providing cooked food to the underprivileged at fourteen low-cost housing locations within the Klang Valley following Raya,” he said.

The locations are: PPR Kerinchi, PPR Sri Pantai, PPR Desa Mentari, Mentari Court, PPR Desa Tun Razak, Flat Sri Kota, Flat Sri Johor, Flat Sri Sabah, Pangsapuri Putra Ria, Apartment Abdullah Hukum, Sri Sarawak, PPR Loke Yew, PPR Pinggiran Bukit Jalil, and PPR Kampung Muhibbah.


In addition to collecting and distributing food to those in need, FAF operates a food laboratory to ensure that donated food meets hygiene and safety standards before distribution to beneficiaries and communities. “This facility receives support from Taylor’s University and Empire Bioscience.

“We also extend assistance to areas affected by disasters or crises. Last month, our team was in Pulau Pangkor, distributing clean water to those affected by the water crisis. Public Bank Islamic supported this effort,” he said. “Sometimes, we also travel into rural areas to deliver food. Earlier this year, we provided food to 240 families in Kelantan,” he added.

Recalling the Emergency Flood Relief efforts in February last year, Izzul recounted how their team distributed food supplies sponsored by MSIG in Kelantan and Terengganu. “We are committed to our mission of feeding the people until there is no longer a reliance on food banks and their distributions,” he said, adding that FAF’s team was committed to the organisation’s tagline of “Nourishing Hope and Eradicating Hunger and Poverty”.


As a closing remark and a word of gratitude to FAF’s donors, Rick Chee said: “Your kind support has not only filled our sails with courage but has also sparked a contagious enthusiasm within our team. With your support, we are inspired to do more, reach higher, and make a greater difference in our community. Together, we are creating positive change, and your contribution is a key ingredient in our recipe for success. Thank you for believing in our mission.”

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by malaysiakini

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