Soul Food

This is the second installment in a weekly series in which The Straits Times Picture Desk partners Samsung to capture moments of The Good That People Do

SINGAPORE - Every Monday, Ms Nora Lim, 45, and her mother knock on up to 20 doors announcing 'food is here!' before cheerily passing the home's occupant a meal.

Ms Lim and her mother, Madam Nancy Leow, 79, are part of the Meals-On-Wheels programme by TOUCH Community Services, which delivers lunch and dinner daily to some 500 needy elderly every month.

Ms Lim is one of the programme's longest serving volunteers, having joined it when it first began in 2003.

"I run my own business so I had some free time... and I said why not do something more fulfilling and meaningful?" she said, adding that having a car makes it more convenient for her to do the deliveries.

Five years later, she encouraged her mother to join her. The latter readily agreed and the pair have faithfully carried out their weekly delivery runs in Toa Payoh for the past 10 years.

While the task of delivering food may seem simple, it has helped Ms Lim to be more aware of the needy in society.

Once, a blind and physically disabled man whom she used to deliver food to asked her for her number, saying he wanted to have someone to call during an emergency.

But the man ended up calling her every night to ask her what she was doing and even asked her to be his girlfriend.

While Ms Lim politely declined, she said the incident made her realise how lonely some of these elderly people are.

"Most of them stay alone and just want to have a listening ear," she said.

As a result, Ms Lim sometimes stays to chat with the elderly when she delivers them food and takes the time to listen to their problems.

One beneficiary, Madam Ong Foo Chin, 80, said the daily food delivery has helped to take care of her meals after a fall left her unable to walk properly.

"I worried about how I would get food to eat," she said. "I'm so thankful... for all the volunteers who deliver the food to me very punctually."

While Madam Leow is older than most the beneficiaries, she insists that it is not tiring for her to go up and down the blocks.

"They (the elderly beneficiaries) all lead tough lives. Some can't walk, or are blind, or are really old," she said. "If we don't do this, no one will deliver food to them."

Visit www.touch.org.sg, or contact TOUCH Community Services at 68046565 or homecare@touch.org.sg to find out more about volunteering with Meals-On-Wheels.

These photographs and video were shot with a Samsung Galaxy S9+. Its Dual Aperture (f1.5 and f2.4) automatically adjusts to any lighting conditions, in the day and at night.

Using the PRO mode, Straits Times photojournalist Gavin Foo shot at an aperture of f/1.5, with ISO 400 and toggled the shutter speed between 1/50 and 1/90 of a second to capture sharp images of Ms Lim and Madam Leow as they made their way through the HDB corridors and stairwells delivering dinner to the elderly.

For more photos, videos and a chance to win an S9+, go to http://str.sg/oNJz.

To sign up for a June 23 masterclass on how to get the best out of your S9 go to http://str.sg/oNJK.
 
To take part in the ST Tech photo contest and win a S9, go to http://str.sg/oNJr.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 03, 2018, with the headline 'Cheer up, food is here'. Print Edition | Subscribe