160,000 eligible Singaporeans to receive $100 worth of grocery vouchers

This is part of the Care and Support Package announced at last year's Budget. ST PHOTO: KUA CHEE SIONG

SINGAPORE - About 160,000 eligible Singaporeans will receive $100 worth of grocery vouchers next month to support them with their household expenses amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

This is part of the Care and Support Package announced at last year's Budget.

All Singaporeans aged 21 and above this year who live in one- and two-room Housing Board flats and do not own more than one property are eligible for the vouchers, said the Ministry of Finance in a statement on Monday (Sept 27).

The grocery voucher scheme will provide a total of about $63 million in assistance to those eligible.

Last year, the recipients received $300 worth of vouchers in two equal batches: one in October and one in December.

Next month's distribution of $100 worth of vouchers will be the third batch.

The vouchers will be delivered to eligible households on Saturdays throughout next month, from Oct 2.

Eligible recipients in Chinatown, Queenstown and Bukit Merah, for instance, will have their vouchers delivered to their doorstep on Oct 2. If there is no one at home to receive the vouchers that day, there will be a second delivery attempt over the following week, between Oct 4 and Oct 8.

If there is no one to pick up the second delivery as well, the courier will leave a delivery notification card at the doorstep for recipients to collect their vouchers at a specified post office within 10 working days.

The grocery vouchers can be used at supermarkets, including Giant, FairPrice, Prime Supermarket and Sheng Siong.

Ms Fu Chunrui, 38, who sells clothes at a wet market in Jurong, is looking forward to receiving the vouchers next month, having benefited from the $300 worth of vouchers she got last year.

She has been not working these past two weeks as she had to stay home and support her two daughters, who are on home-based learning.

"My earnings have been greatly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. The grocery vouchers were very useful. I usually spend about $70-$80 each time I visit the supermarket, so $150 worth of vouchers helped to pay for two visits," added Ms Fu, who lives in a two-room rental flat with her daughters.

In October last year, the first batch of grocery vouchers were delivered to letterboxes at HDB blocks, leading to a series of voucher thefts islandwide. Letterboxes were forcibly pried open in various neighbourhoods.

For instance, a 34-year-old woman used an improvised device comprising a pen, a fishing hook and sticky tape to steal $450 worth of vouchers from letterboxes in Kim Tian Place.

The second batch of $150 worth of vouchers in December was delivered directly to people's homes.

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