ANZA Action: Project Dignity

Koh Seng Choon, Executive Director and Founder of Project Dignity - an ANZA Action supported charity - talks about how food offers hope and dignity to marginalised communities in Singapore.

What is Project Dignity? 
We are a Singapore-based street food experience business with a social mission. As well as running cooking classes and culinary team-bonding programmes, we provide training and employment opportunities for groups under represented in Singapore’s workforce. More than 60% of our staff are disabled or from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Why is dignity an important word for your organisation?
We believe that dignity is a basic human right; nobody deserves to be treated as less than human, no matter where you’ve come from.

How does the organisation work?
Dignity Learn is our culinary training and placement arm. It runs certified courses for professionals seeking employment or business opportunities in the street food industry. We have a 21-day Train-and-Place curriculum for adults with disabilities. Over the past nine years in business, we have trained and placed over 600 individuals.

What other initiatives do you run?
We established Dignity Kitchen, Asia’s first food court operated by people with disabilities and the disadvantaged. Daily lunch treats are also served to the elderly. (The food court is open to the public during lunch hours at Serangoon Ave 3) Dignity Mama is a hospital book-and-muffin stall managed by mothers and young adults with disabilities.

How can people get involved?
We run team-bonding or corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities at Dignity Kitchen. Food enthusiasts can also take up cooking classes with us to learn more about Singapore cuisine. We don’t take donations but sponsoring a lunch treat for the elderly is another way to get involved.

What are some future projects?
We are in the midst of expanding to Hong Kong. We also look forward to more ANZA partnerships in the future.

Other opportunities for ANZA members:

Catering – ANZA members can book Project Dignity for personal or workplace catering – they offer a range of bento boxes and other menus.

Volunteering – There could be opportunities to volunteer at senior lunches; serving, cleaning and interacting with elderly visitors. Project Dignity is also interested in partnering with school groups, so young adults can volunteer by helping with meal prep and chatting with seniors.

For more info: projectdignity.sg or email enquiry@projectdignity.sg