News

'HAMPERS WILL HELP FEED MY BOYS'

Madam Lee Gek Noi, 45, is a part-time cleaner and also looks after her two sons, aged eight and nine, and her mother-in-law, 70.

She is the main breadwinner as her husband, an odd-job worker, does not have a stable income.

Her brother-in-law, who also lives with her, has a low IQ and does his part for the family by selling packets of tissue paper.

The family struggles to make ends meet. Madam Lee brings in about $600 a month and receives financial help for her children's school needs.

Half of her salary goes towards paying for the mortgage of her three-room flat, which comes up to $320 a month.

She has about $700 in overdue utility bills.

She said in Mandarin: "I'm worried they will cut off the electricity to my flat. My mother-in-law needs to have the lights on at night to see and without it, there might be a risk of her falling."

Another worry for the family: Her mother-in-law's gout.

Said Madam Lee: "Sometimes my brother-in-law would unknowingly buy his mother food that she shouldn't be eating, and when I try to stop her, she will insist on eating it anyway, saying it would be a waste if she didn't."

DANGER

Her two sons, who are hyperactive, need constant supervision as they might endanger the themselves, and the people around them if left unattended, she said.

She said in Mandarin: "My elder child has dunked his sibling's head into the water at a swimming pool and they have even managed to set the kitchen on fire.

"You never know what they can be up to so you need to keep watch every minute."

Madam Lee said the food hampers given by Project Food Care will help feed her boys.

"The food is helpful to us as they give things that we eat frequently. My boys are also about to go through puberty so it will also go a long way in giving them the nutrients to grow."

I'm worried they will cut off the electricity to my flat. My mother-in-law needs to have the lights on at night to see, and without it there might be a risk of her falling.

- Madam Lee Gek Noi