#InMyKampung: Dark Side Cruiser
Meet the crew that's on the route to do good.
When we see someone in hardship, do we look at them with pity? For one man, he looks at their potential and possibilities - and these are the key drivers of his community work.
36-year-old KC used his personal mobility device to travel, carry out food deliveries, and explore new places, but knew there was something more he could do with it. “I thought, why not tap on our income and PMDs to deliver free food to people in need?”
This idea sparked off the Dark Side Cruiser project, which has now evolved into a team of 15 individuals who are committed to moving forward from their dark pasts to give back. “I’ve been through very difficult times,” KC, the team’s founder, says. “So when I see people struggling, I think about how I can encourage them to improve their lives and move forward too.”
Starting with delivering food to the homeless in Ang Mo Kio, the Dark Side Cruisers have since carried out different initiatives across various estates. They keep an unwavering belief in co-solutioning, both within the team and beyond. “We find out about issues in the area from residents we talk to - when we buy packs of food to distribute, the stall makcik will willingly contribute free extras, and advise us on where else we can support,” he says.
KC sees how many have the potential to do good things, but don’t have the right support and confidence. “By selling food illegally at void decks, home based businesses’ efforts would be wasted if they were caught and fined - but they simply didn’t know how else to do it.” Tapping on their expertise in Facebook Live auctions, the Dark Side Cruisers helped publicise and market the businesses’ products, leading to increased sales.
For the close-knit crew, giving back isn’t just about meeting urgent needs. “We had this idea to create a pasar in a multi-purpose hall, which could allow home-based businesses to sell their goods, while also allowing neighbours to bond.” By creating stronger connections, the Dark Side Cruisers enable residents to build close-knit communities where neighbours, including isolated seniors, help to look out for one another.
“My daughter herself wanted to help, too,” KC shares with a smile. “One day, she suddenly said, ‘Why don’t we give them old-school banana leaf nasi lemak, so they can reminisce their old days?’ After we distributed them, we even saw some elderly coming together to eat the nasi lemak at the void deck, just to relive that communal, kampung spirit!”
Our new #InMyKampung series explores the inspiring stories of everyday people who give back to those around them through ground-up community work. At AMKFSC Community Services, we provide the space, resources and support necessary for residents like KC to lead community initiatives that ensure their fellow neighbours do not fall through the cracks, especially during the Covid-19 period. If you would like to help us build more resilient and self-sustainable communities through the pandemic, donate here.