by: Izzat Tham
In this day and age, it’s easy to get wrapped up in our day to day conundrums and forget to give back to the people who need it the most.
Meet Alice Lee Massang, a person who gives back. Alice is behind the charitable cause in Petaling Jaya that specialises in feeding the poor, the needy, and the homeless.
ASK (Assumption Soup Kitchen) was originally founded by Reverend Father Phillips Muthu 4 years ago. His main objective was that he simply wanted to feed the poor. Since then, the title has been passed on and it’s now up to the 50 year old kind-hearted Samaritan and the rest of the wonderful church members and volunteers to drive this charitable cause.
What is so wonderful about her is the disposition she has about life. Her goal is to be as selfless as she possibly can.
The driving force behind her continued commitment to the cause is derived from a bible verse, “For I was hungry and you gave something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in.” – Matthew 25: 35-40
The operators of ASK work and abide by three important rules that are imperative when it comes to serving guests. They are Dignity, Cleanliness, and Good manners.
The Dignity of every guest is important because every each and every person that comes to the soup kitchen is of a human being and even with their own shortcomings, they still ought to be treated with respect, this is why she emphasises on serving them with proper tables, tablecloths, and a nice ambience.
Cleanliness because it’s common courtesy to treat fellow human beings with respect.
“We feed them with dignity, that is why we serve them with proper table, with table clothes, and very clean environment, especially in the kitchen – we take hygiene very seriously” she said.
Good manners because they insist on everyone to show appreciation after being served and handed the plate of food given to them.
“You must remember your Please and Q’s” said one of the senior lady volunteers.
ASK started off as a sort of mobile food truck whereby volunteers would venture off to flats and premises of the needy and poor with a van, pick them up, and drive them to the soup kitchen. Once everyone was done with their meal, they would drive them back to their homes.
However, this process was taking a toll on their resources, such as the cost of fuel and the lack of space in the van.
So they started to deliver the food to designated flats and premises, which was more convenient for both parties. Many of those who rely on this service are young children and low class Indians, said Anne Goonting, a senior volunteer and a housewife.
ASK is now feeding about 480 – 500 needy persons, twice a day on Mondays and Wednesdays. Out of these large numbers, 400 are to be delivered. The diet consists of either Freshly cooked mutton, chicken, vegetables and fish. Usually, it’s one of the above and paired with a vegetables
The rest of the food that isn’t packed is served in the soup kitchen or the “Assumption Family House” that works as a dining hall for all the people that come in search of food.
If everyone were to take the initiative and help those in need as Alice has, the world would be a place where a person going hungry isn’t commonplace.
For inquiries on how you can contribute to Assumption Soup Kitchen, call:
Alice Lee Massang, 012-212 2397
Assumption Church Office, 03 7782 5854