SINGAPORE – Bus captain Rickee Ng starts his day at 10.30am, making his way to the dining table to have his first and only meal with his wife. It has been his routine for the past 3½ years, as Mr Ng, 67, prepares for his nine-hour shift which starts at Jurong East interchange.
The Tower Transit Singapore (TTS) bus captain knows all 12 routes at the interchange and does not drive a fixed bus service.
Two weeks ago, he donated 33 meals, worth $99, to the Belanja-a-Meal programme, where the public can donate a meal for just $3 to needy families.
TTS will also match every donation meal-for-meal and donate an additional 200 meals each month to needy families living in the Yuhua area through the South West Community Development Council.
Mr Ng said: “The act of kindness is a basic thing most people can do.”
He is just one of several public transport workers helping the community get through the Covid-19 pandemic.
His Malaysian colleague, Madam Jenova Sebastian, 48, who is separated from her family in Malaysia, also rose to the challenge on March 5.
As she was about to turn into Bukit Batok bus interchange for a layover, she saw an elderly man who had fallen off his personal mobility aid (PMA).
She told her passengers there would be a slight delay, before alighting to help the frail man. Three other passengers also alighted and the quartet assisted the elderly back onto his PMA.
Madam Jenova said: “I learn life through this job. I am proud to be a bus captain, it’s like a special key is given to me to do my part.”
SMRT station operators, Mr Chase Chua, 38, and Mr Aadi Salleh, 50, helped their station cleaners and service ambassadors. Mr Chua bought food vouchers and items for them and visited one cleaner at home to pass the vouchers to her family.
In March 2020, due to border closure, Malaysian staff were unable to return home.
Mr Aadi offered to pay for a courier to transport essentials such as medicine and food from Johor Bahru to Singapore.
Mr Aadi said: “Whenever I give, I get something intangible. Maybe happiness, or relationships. That is my repayment, I don’t expect anything in return.”
Mr Lam Sheau Kai, president of SMRT Trains, said: “We are proud of station managers Chase and Aadi for going above their duties to help others wholeheartedly.”
Mr Sim Soon Teck, 65, is the chairman of CabbyCare Charity Group, an initiative consisting of ComfortDelGro cabbies who help the less fortunate.
Since 2006, the cab driver has been participating in the Meals-On-Wheels programme, which provides free meal deliveries to the elderly who are unable to buy and prepare food.
Thrice a month, Mr Sim heads to Toa Payoh and spends two hours packing the meals before delivering them.
He made monthly deliveries in 2020, including during the two-month circuit breaker period.
He said: “The thought of stopping never crossed my mind. Life is short, my heart is at ease when I’m able to do something meaningful.”
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