SINGAPORE - Messages of hope and encouragement are being sent to medical workers through sweet treats.
Since January, at least five home-grown bakeries have had baked goods sent to medical workers, either as their own initiative or from individuals wanting to show their support for frontline workers.
Whisked, a local bakery helmed by Singapore entrepreneur Geraldine Tan, recently gave out 1,000 desserts to medical staff island-wide. She decided to do so after reading about how healthcare workers were shunned by the public.
"Front-line medical staff should be treated better when they are the ones who sacrifice their time with loved ones and work tirelessly to protect and take care of patients without knowing when the coronavirus pandemic will end," says Ms Tan. She hopes the cupcakes and doughnuts given out between Feb 23 and March 5 will serve as an encouragement for their hard work and sacrifices.
Ms Hilary Beh, director of Abite Atelier, which had sent 360 cupcakes and a cake to healthcare workers, agrees with the sentiment. "This 'sweet' gesture was mainly to thank our frontliners for their hard work and dedication, give them motivation and let them know we appreciate them," she says.
Some bakeries have also seen an increase in sales of Covid-19-related baked goods and requests.
Zee & Elle, a boutique cake shop, has seen an increase of about 10 per cent in sales of cakes with special messages such as "Thought of you today" and "Stay safe, stay healthy".
"This stay safe, stay healthy message is entirely new, something we have never seen before," says Ms Chong Jia Yan, the shop's marketing and operations executive. These requests come mainly from individuals and are part of Zee & Elle's Say It With Cakes collection, which allows customers to personalise their cakes with customised messages.
Folks and Stories, another local bakery, has also seen at least a 20 per cent increase in sales of its Thank You Gift Set and custom orders for individual cookies with thank you messages from individuals.
"Having sweets to deliver their appreciation to healthcare workers appears to be a suitable, convenient and contactless option for individuals," says Ms Jody Ang, the bakery's founder.
The bakery has had multiple orders sent to local hospitals by individuals, including Singapore General Hospital (SGH), Tan Tock Seng Hospital and Gleneagles Hospital.
While many individuals who buy these care packages choose to remain anonymous, medical personnel are grateful for the support and encouragement they have received.
"These gestures of goodwill are deeply appreciated by all of us at SGH and will keep us going in the fight against Covid-19," said Ms Mumtaj Ibrahim, senior manager of community relations at SGH, in a statement thanking local actress Rui En's fan club for the 2,150 care packages they had delivered to medical staff in February.
Local bakery Honeypeachsg offers customised medical design related cupcakes at $4.50 a piece. Customers can order the cupcakes from the link in the shop's Instagram bio or by sending them a direct message.
Plain Vanilla Bakery
Plain Vanilla Bakery's Say It With Flour Boxes spell out special messages in icing across a dozen cupcakes. Each box of 12 cupcakes costs $54 and can be purchased from Plain Vanilla Bakery's website.
Petite Joy Bakes
Petite Joy Bakes, a local cake studio, gave out around 25 care packages of baked goods, including a slice of pound cake, cookies and madeleines to healthcare workers at SGH in February. The bakery also sources from local companies, where possible, when buying ingredients such as unbleached flour, eggs and sugar. Customers can buy a box of 12 madeleines for $10 from order.petitejoybakes.com