Second Harvest Asia (2HA) Executive Director Yusuke Wada visited Grace Community Services Food Bank in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, on Nov 5. The food bank was part of Grace Community Services (GCS). GCS is a charity group that runs elderly care homes, orphanages, a drug-rehabilitation center, and other programs. The food bank is one of their programs. This visit was part of 2HA’s efforts to create a food bank network in Asia. 2HA hopes we will be able to form a network of food banks to share their best practices and develop further food banking in Asia.
GCS was founded by Dr. Henry Pillai to “with a primary objective to provide community care, food, shelter and rehabilitation to the homeless, destitute, abandoned, abused and neglected from all strata of society.” GCS founded the food bank in 2006.
GCS’s warehouse. Their warehouse is equipped with two walk-in refrigerators in this facility.
In their warehouse, they stored all types of food from rice to noodle, oil, canned goods, to packaged food.
The food bank provides food bags prepared by its volunteers to 400 families in need every month.
A Japanese supermarket chain, JUSCO, donated a van to GCS. You can see the logo of Malaysian Jusco Foundation. In Malaysia, they often use the term, CSR, which stands for Corporate Social Responsibility. Japanese corporations are active with CSR in Malaysia as well as local corporations. GCS has four vehicles for its food bank operation.
I visited one of GCS children homes. Children there welcomed me very warmly. GCS staff told me that drug abuse and gamble addictions were big issues in Malaysia. Children are always very vulnerable with those social problems. Hope food banking can contribute to lessening the pain of the victims of those problems.
2HA aims to create the network of food banks in Asia. We believe we will learn a great deal from GCS’s rich experiences.
Second Harvest Asia will develop the regional food bank network in Asia to share best practices and experiences with other food banks. We hold online meetings regularly with Asian food bank members. If you are interested in joining our regional network, please contact us at email@example.com.