It is no secret that 2020 has been an immensely challenging time for civil society organisations (CSOs). Considering this, the PRIHATIN Rakyat Economic Stimulus Package was rolled out on March 27 in response to the issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.
To further improve the quality of life of the country’s poor and B40 families and build resiliency, the Hasanah Special Grant (HSG) 2020 was launched. Under HSG, the Ministry of Finance (MoF) allocated RM25 million in a matching grant to support social programmes implemented by Hasanah. It is clear that in order to extend assistance to the target groups, enabling rapid mobilisation of resources to CSOs, non-governmental organisations, and social enterprises is a prerequisite.
Jo, Jessica and their son Albert gained from Tanoti’s fabric face mask sewing project. They represent but one family from the vast number of people HSG has assisted. Between the three of them, a side income of more than RM4,000 was generated within a month, enabling the construction of their rumah kebun to commence.
Another example is Masala Wheels’ capacity building programme, targeted at F&B micro-entrepreneurs in the Klang Valley, particularly those living in PPR Batu Muda, PPR Desa Mentari and PPR Laksamana, Kuala Lumpur. Meanwhile, Yayasan Generasi Gemilang focused on improving the nutrition and health of pregnant mothers and 170 children below six years through nutrition education, support groups and nutritious supplementary food supply. Up north, the Eden Handicap Service Centre offered training and work therapy to people with disabilities in a bid to encourage self-sufficiency.
While recipient organisations may vary greatly in the work they do, they all share a common purpose of helping individuals navigate the tempestuous economic waters resulting from the worldwide pandemic.