This is the second in a series of posts highlighting what M2030 partners are doing to respond to the COVID-19 crisis.
As the COVID-19 pandemic hits Indonesia, the Tahir Foundation, an M2030 Founding Partner, along with its parent Mayapada Group of companies, are taking action to protect communities during the crisis.
The Mayapada Group and Tahir Foundation have pledged over Rp 52 billion (US $3.2 million) to help Indonesians during the COVID-19 pandemic. Seventy percent of the donation will be in cash, with the remainder in the form of donated medical supplies such as masks and thermometers, food, and vehicles to support sanitation efforts.
The funds will distributed around the country, with Rp 22 billion going to Jakarta, Rp 10 billion to West Java, Rp 10 billion to Central Java, and Rp 10 billion to East Java. An Rp 2 billion portion of the donation allotted for Jakarta was already transferred to the Ministry of Social Affairs on March 24th. The remainder of the donation for Jakarta will be channeled through religious groups for aid work in their local communities. The groups include the Istiqlal Mosque (80%), the Jakarta Archbishopric (10%), and the Indonesian Churches Association (10%).
In addition to the COVID-19 health crisis, the pandemic is taking a heavy toll on informal economies around the world. In Jakarta, street vendors and motorcycle taxi drivers who rely on daily cash incomes have been hit hard. As the city shuts down and most office workers stay home to ride out the crisis, many workers in the informal economy have seen their incomes drop dramatically. Mayapada Group and the Tahir Foundation are taking steps to help, and have now set up temporary food depots at all of their buildings in Jakarta. The depots have been set up in partnership with local small and medium enterprises, and will provide 1,000 free meals at each location for at least the next three months. These meals are targeted for street vendors, taxi drivers, and others in need who are struggling financially during the crisis.
The Tahir Foundation is also looking to help beyond the borders of Indonesia, with the organization’s founder Dr. Tahir donating additional money to China and Singapore for COVID-19 relief. Tahir’s donation to Singapore, totaling $500,000 to be distributed through Singapore Press Holding’s Chinese Media Group, will go to help vulnerable groups in the country.
In an interview with The Straits Times, Tahir explained why he was donating to Singapore.
“The Singapore Government has done well, and done so much. But I’ve had a strange observation — I don’t see Singaporean businessmen or tycoons responding, at least not yet.
“So I hope that a small donation from a Singapore PR will encourage them to also participate.
“(Fighting the coronavirus) is a combined government and public job. Everyone has an obligation and responsibility to participate.”
Tahir says governments and the public must work together, and it is clear that he believes businesses also have a role to play in this public health crisis. Through the leadership of the Tahir Foundation and Mayapada Group, he hopes to help people in need while encouraging other businesses to step up and lend a hand as well.