ANZA Action: Migrant Worker Donation Drive

ANZA Action has been hard at work, collecting toiletries and other items in  a donation drive for ItsRainingRaincoats (IRR), a charity founded in 2015 by Dipa Swaminathan to improve the lives of some 300,000 migrant workers in Singapore.

ANZA Action answers the call for tolietries for migrant workers

“On 6 August ItsRainingRaincoats posted an article to their Facebook page detailing how the migrant workforce were struggling with isolation and uncertainty for their future, their livelihoods and the wellbeing of their families,” says ANZA Member Kris Parkinson. “Due to quarantine many have been unable to leave their dorms and purchase personal items such as toiletries.”

ANZA Action answered the call for help and within a matter of days volunteers opened their hearts, their wallets, and their homes. “A network of hubs was set up across Singapore to enable people to donate personal toiletries to a central location in their area,” says Kris. “This donation drive has seen over six thousand individual items including shampoo, razors, shaving foam, body wash, soap, toothpaste/brushes, deodorant and nail clippers donated from across the city. Four individual construction site dorms will be supported by these donations.”

Kris (far left) organising collection of supplies
Dental care kits ready to be sent to sites

Additionally, an urgent call came in from IRR asking if anyone had hair clippers/trimmers as six men were in desperate need of a trim. ANZA Action came to the rescue. “Within hours ANZA Action managed to find six sets of brand-new hair trimmers,” says Kris. “Simple things, such as being able to keep their hair trimmed and take pride in their appearance, makes an enormous difference to the workers wellbeing and mental health.”

New hair clippers/trimmers, snacks, masks and toothbrushes

Tens of thousands of Singapore’s migrant worker have been impacted by COVID-19, highlighting their contribution to the city. “They work incredibly long hours in the construction industry, rain or shine, to build our condos, MRT stations, office buildings, concert venues, schools and HDB’s,” says Kris. “They keep Singapore’s world-famous gardens beautifully groomed and blossoming, maintain our streets, provide security, and so much more. They are loving fathers, husbands, sons, grandsons, brothers and nephews and each one has a personal story to tell as to why those chose to leave their cities, villages and homes to come to Singapore chasing the hopes and dreams of a better life for their family.”

For any more information on IRR or to enquire about becoming involved or volunteer please contact IRR via their Facebook page.

Interested in joining ANZA Action? Our Community Affairs arm has one off, short and long-term volunteering opportunities in many areas of the community. Contact them here or follow their Facebook page