Free Food Operation Connects National Solidarity During Emergency PPKM

In the midst of activity restrictions or Emergency PPKM, Aksi Cepat Tanggap (ACT) endeavors to unite community solidarity. Through Free Food Operation (OPG), free food distribution transcends barriers and differences.

Free Food Operation
Representatives of a number of religious organizations, KADIN, the Indonesian Ulama Council, and President of Aksi Cepat Tanggap (second from right) show waqf rice packages that would be distributed free of charge to residents affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. (ACTNews/M. Ubaidillah)

ACTNews, BOGOR – The Emergency Community Activity Restrictions (Emergency PPKM) has been in effect from July 3 to 20. In Java and Bali. Consequently, economic activities that cause crowds have to be limited or halted. Workers in non-essential and non-critical fields have to work from home. Offices that do not operate in essential or critical areas are required to carry out activities from their respective homes. Learning activities must also be continued online to stop the spread of the deadly Covid-19 virus.

Various obstacles also arise after the implementation of this policy. As many as 70% -80% of MSME owners who are trying to recover are expected to experience yet another decline. This policy is also expected to result in another wave of layoffs and increase the number of unemployment. In fact, the three provinces in which the Emergency PPKM is implemented still has an open unemployment rate above the national average, which was 6.26% in February 2021. Banten, for example, had an open employment rate of 9.01% in February 2021. The open unemployment rate in West Java stood at 8.92% in the same period while in Jakarta it was recorded at 8.51%.

Responding to this condition, Aksi Cepat Tanggap (ACT) launched the Free Food Operation aimed to help those who are experiencing difficulties during the Emergency PPKM, Thursday (8/7/2021). This program is ready to support the food needs of the community in the midst of the activity restrictions.

"By carrying the spirit of Indonesia's Solidarity in Emergency, we feel that this restriction should not reduce our solidarity at all. We must continue our culture of gotong royong and togetherness. We must help each other,” said ACT President Ibnu Khajar at the launch of the Free Food Operation at the Waqf Distribution Center, Gunung Putri, Bogor Regency.

For the Free Food Operation, ACT has prepared one thousand tons of Waqf Rice, one hundred thousand boxes of Waqf Drinking Water which is a product of Global Wakaf – ACT’s Waqf fund management, and one thousand sacrificial animals from Global Qurban-ACT. "We hope that, with this way, this nation of Indonesia will be able to rise up faster. This is an initial assistance. If the Emergency PPKM is implemented nationally, the assistance that we give will be even more extensive, "added Ibnu.

This program is well-received by various parties who attended the event, including the Indonesian Ulama Council (MUI), the Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KADIN), the Nahdlatul Ulama Executive Board (PBNU), Muhammadiyah, Council of Churches in Indonesia (PGI), and Parisada Hindu Dharma Indonesia (PHDI).

Amirsyah Tambunan from MUI invited the public to be involved in this philanthropic movement. “Even though we are separated by distance, our hearts, minds, and concerns must be close to one another. And this is a manifestation that we are close to Allah, the Almighty God. In this way, our sustenance will be facilitated," he said.

On the same occasion, Secretary-General of PGI Jacky Manuputty hoped that this good movement could become one of the things that spark public concern at large. “Sociability and solidarity are our characteristics as an extraordinary nation. And this can be a very sweet example for this country and other nations. Thank you again, and may God bless the hearts and generosity that we share,” said Jacky.[]