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One Good Thing: A Singapore skyline view for migrant workers

Taiwan News, Singapore, 30 March 2021 - The capsules of the Ferris wheel in Singapore were peppered with rain.

Not great for a bird’s eye view of the city. But the migrant workers riding the Singapore Flyer attraction did not mind.

They were a fraction of at least 20,000 workers getting a treat, from members of the public and businesses.

The ItsRainingRaincoats initiative began calling for tickets to be donated to the workers in January.

A volunteer felt it was a meaningful way to use tourism vouchers from the government, founder Dipa Swaminathan said.

Singapore citizens aged 18 and older have received 100 Singapore dollars ($74.30) in vouchers. They were to spend it on attractions, hotels and tours — businesses that have lost income during the coronavirus pandemic.

Swaminathan’s group worked with the Ferris wheel operator and a booking platform to get tickets routed to the foreign workers.

“There are so many people who appreciate the contributions workers have made to Singapore and this is their chance to give back,” Swaminathan said.

“There’s a lot of joy in giving. I think that’s what causes the public … to support us in these kinds of endeavors,” she told The Associated Press.

The group will keep organizing rides as long as tickets stream in.

A ticket, which includes entrance to an interactive display, costs 35 Singapore dollars ($26). There are currently enough for 20,000 workers.

That is 2% of the 700,000 to 800,000 who live in Singapore, Swaminathan estimates.

She said the “contained” nature of the Ferris wheel makes it a good fit.

Volunteers reminded the riders to keep their masks on and keep a 1-meter distance during a recent visit.

Ganesan Thivagar visited with his dormitory mates. They waited while rides were briefly halted for bad weather.



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